There are few things that are more frightening than being in an automobile crash with a truck. In a moment’s time, you find yourself in an unnatural scene and it seems as though the world exploded around you.
When you come to a stop, you take inventory to discover injuries to yourself, your passengers, and the driver of the truck. Your car is destroyed or at least significantly damaged and right at this moment, you are expected to remain lucid and to begin a process of identification, discovery, record keeping, and reports.
While we hope that we do everything the way it needs to be done in order to recover our losses from the insurance companies involved, it is easy to make mistakes. These mistakes can cost you dearly, unless you have our truck accident lawyers to rectify the situation.
What To Do At The Scene
First of all, the priority is people. If anyone is injured in either vehicle or someone was hurt that was in the area during the accident, your (and everyone’s) priority is to seek immediate medical attention. Call for an ambulance and contact the police.
If someone is bleeding, use whatever clothes you have to press against the wound to slow the bleeding. Do not attempt to move anyone. Follow the instructions of the 911 operator.
Assuming the people are taken care of, here is what you need to know and do:
- It is illegal to leave the scene of an accident when there are injuries or serious damage to the vehicles.
- Exchange information
- Insurance information
- Phone number
- Driver’s license
- Name of the truck line involved
- Take pictures
- Photograph the scene from all angles (have someone help if you are unable)
- Photograph street signs and landmarks to identify where you are
- Video witnesses providing their name and phone number if it is easier than writing it down
The Following Day
Even if you think you are not injured, make an appointment with your doctor for a complete checkup. You may develop pain in your back, neck, and other body parts as swelling begins and injuries make themselves known.
Contact your insurance company and report the accident. Provide all the information you obtained. Note: do not give away your only copies of anything. If you have a police report, either ask for a copy of it or photograph it with your phone.
Contact Your Attorney
While this may seem premature to you, it is not. Your attorney is skilled and experienced in the laws of Texas. He or she will make sure all of the protocols are followed. There are time limits on filing various reports. Dealing with a commercial truck company is difficult. Do not assume they will be fair.
It is wise to speak with your truck accident attorney before you speak with or give a statement to the insurance company of the truck driver. Do not make any statements that can be considered “admitting partial guilt.”
Do not sign anything without your attorney. This can cost you big time. If you are to recover all you are entitled to, you need to consult your attorney asap.
Your attorney will shield you from the stress this situation will bring and they will ensure you get fair and honest compensation.