What To Do After a Truck Accident
Accidents that involve large trucks often lead to disaster. If you or a loved one has suffered serious or catastrophic injuries in a truck accident, the stress and trauma have likely left you uncertain about your next steps and your options.
At Bottlinger Law L.L.C., we understand what you are going through, so we’ve prepared a step-by-step guide for victims and their families. In many cases, victims have sustained severe injuries and are unable to do anything other than receive emergency medical care – leaving it up to families, friends, and anyone left uninjured in the collision to follow these steps.
Step One: Call 9-1-1
The first thing to do in any catastrophic automobile collision is to call 9-1-1. The call will immediately dispatch law enforcement and emergency medical staff to the scene to provide vital medical assistance and initiate an investigation into the crash.
Step Two: Seek Medical Attention
Your life and the lives of your passengers are the most important thing, and providing immediate medical assistance is the top priority. First-aid immediately after an injury can mean the difference between life and death, and we always recommend doing anything possible to help yourself and others. Even if you do not think your injuries are severe, you should get checked out by a medical professional at an ER. They are trained to identify signs of trauma and internal damage.
Step Three: Exchange Information with the Other Parties Involved
Whoever is physically able must exchange personal and insurance information with anyone else involved in the scene. Once someone leaves the scene of an accident, it can be challenging to locate them and follow the appropriate legal procedures. You should get, if possible:
- The driver’s personal information
- Insurance information
- The license plate, model, and description of the truck
- Information on the trucker’s employer
Step Four: Document the Scene of the Accident
If possible, you should take notes and photos of:
- The locations and conditions after the accident
- Any damage to your vehicle
- Damage to the other vehicles
- Your injuries and the injuries of any passengers
- Any surrounding factors that may have contributed, such as construction debris or poor road conditions.
This documentation can be vital information and evidence for your insurance claim or lawsuit.
Step Five: Speak to the Uniformed Representatives of Your Local Police Force
When the police arrive, you will have to speak to them and provide information regarding what happened. In doing so, you must talk ONLY in facts – never give your opinion or admit fault for the accident. You are likely in shock, and you may not have all the information, so don’t say anything that can incriminate yourself.
Step Six: Report the Accident to Your Insurance Provider
You are legally required to inform your insurance provider of the accident, but give them limited and factual data at this point. They may try to ask questions or get more detailed information – but don’t give it to them. They are going to do everything they can to limit or reduce the compensation you are due, and your best option is to funnel all communication through a truck accident attorney who will protect your rights.
Step Seven: Speak to an Attorney
Trucking accidents can be complicated and involve multiple parties, any of whom may be liable for your injuries. These accidents need to be fully investigated, and the responsible parties then held accountable for their negligence. If you have suffered a severe injury in a trucking accident, hiring a knowledgeable Omaha truck accident attorney will significantly increase your chances of recovering compensation for your injuries and making the best of a terrible situation.
Our legal team at Bottlinger Law L.L.C. is here to help, so call us today at (402) 505-8234 to schedule a free consultation.
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