Being involved in a semi-truck accident that causes wreckage and injuries can be a traumatic experience for everyone involved. Though the moments after an accident can feel chaotic, it’s important to remember the following general guidelines that many attorneys give in order to protect individuals from being held liable for the accidents and injuries afflicted.
STEP 1. SEEK MEDICAL HELP
The first thing to remember to do after an accident involving a commercial truck, 18-wheeler, or semi-truck is to get medical help by dialing 911 and reporting the accident. Taking care of your injuries you sustained during the accident should be your number one priority.
STEP 2. CONTACT AN ATTORNEY
An experienced truck accident attorney is the best resource and choice you can make. Lawyers with experience in the field can guide you through the necessary steps needed to preserve evidence and bring a claim to the parties involved.
STEP 3 – DO NOT ADMIT GUILT
When talking with the EMT and police at the site of the accident, it is important to be honest with what you tell them happened, however. It is equally important to filter out any additional comments by keeping the conversation minimal. Prevent yourself from asking questions, like, “was anyone hurt?”, for example.
You should also never do or say the following:
- Apologize for the accident.
- Blame yourself for the accident (using the words “my fault”).
- Promise other drivers or passengers involved that your insurance will pay for everything.
- Admit things like “I didn’t notice you” or anything of that nature.
Making comments of this sort could be perceived as an admission of fault, which can risk damaging your case down the road for the damage and personal injury costs that resulted from the trucking accident.
STEP 4. REPORT THE ACCIDENT
If you have not already dialed 911 for medical help, this is the time to do so to make an official report the accident. Most state laws require that accidents are reported right away and leaving the scene before the police come to take a report is also a crime in many states. Having a report is extremely important when someone has been injured and needs immediate medical attention as these details can be recorded and used as official documentation/evidence in the future.
STEP 5. VISIT A DOCTOR
Scheduling an appointment with a doctor is critical, even when you are certain you don’t need it. After an accident, you may have injuries that you’re not aware of. The importance of making sure that you did not sustain any serious personal injuries cannot be overstated. In the event that you have been injured in a commercial truck accident, that you are seen by a doctor or other health care professional immediately.
STEP 6. REPORT YOUR CLAIM WITH INSURANCE
Reporting an insurance claim with your insurance is the final step of safeguarding yourl injury and damages claim. Other tips before contacting insurance would be to review your policy to find out how much coverage you have and what kind of coverage your policy entails.