Although you may try to be as safe as possible when you drive, the potential for an accident still exists because of other negligent drivers. A minor car accident can escalate into a huge, complicated issue if guilty parties are obstinate. A serious accident can turn into an ongoing nightmare when at-fault parties attempt to avoid accountability.
In either of these types of accidents, there are steps that can be taken at the scene of the car accident that can be beneficial. When these useful steps are taken, a car accident lawyer can firm up your legal position as you seek compensation. In this article, we will explain what you should do after a car accident while still on the scene.
For assistance in building your legal case after a car accident, please contact Norris Injury Lawyers. Our Alabama car accident attorneys can assist you in doing what is necessary to receive compensation after your accident. Call us at (800) 477-7510 for a free claim analysis or complete our free consultation form.
What Actions Should You Take at the Car Accident Scene?
It may be challenging to think clearly during the first few minutes following a shocking or terrifying accident. Nonetheless, the moments immediately after a car accident can be crucial.
For the sake of your health and your future legal and financial security, there are some critical actions you can take at the scene of the accident.
Move away from any danger
Safety is a top priority after a car accident. You will want to be concerned with both your safety and that of your passengers. A key action after the accident is to move out of danger and to a safe position.
If your vehicle is stopped on the road, first determine whether the situation is safe to take further action. When it is safe to do so, and if your car still functions, you should move it to the side of the road.
If the vehicle has stopped working, then once there are no oncoming cars, you and your passengers should exit the car. Quickly move away from the crash to a location on the side of the road that is safe.
Seek medical attention promptly
After an accident, it is important to obtain medical attention as quickly as possible. Doing so can contribute to protecting your physical health as well as your ability to obtain sufficient financial compensation. Why do we say this?
On the issue of your health, fast attention can make an enormous difference in how badly an injury develops. Every minute counts. Quick attention to an injury can possibly even prevent long-term health problems.
What, though, if you don’t feel any pain? You should still seek medical attention. Some injuries do not appear instantly. An accident-related condition could manifest itself days or even weeks later.
Additionally, pain is a poor indicator of whether you are seriously hurt or not. The human body, after an emergency situation, can release adrenaline which may mask the pain of even serious injuries. You may feel powerful and spry after the accident, but this can be deceptive. You could still have severe injuries.
In addition to your physical health, a medical exam can be pivotal to your financial health. Suppose your injuries from the accident affect your ability to work or that you have negative medical conditions later resulting from the accident. In that case, documentation from medical personnel regarding your injuries can be helpful.
This medical documentation from immediately after the accident will clearly link your injuries to the cause. Thus, it can be used as evidence when the at-fault parties resist their accountability and to correctly quantify the amount of compensation you deserve.
Inform the police and file a police report
As soon as it is safe to do so after the accident, you should inform the police that an accident has occurred. The law requires an accident to be reported within 30 days if the injuries or damaged property amounts to $250 or more.
You can call the police from the scene and ask that an officer come to make a crash report. A crash report is also referred to as an accident report. The crash report is a neutral professional assessment of the accident and related circumstances. This report can be of critical importance in your recovery of adequate compensation.
The crash report will include:
- The evaluation of the police officer in regard to the intensity of the crash, including whether the crash is mild or severe
- The existing conditions of the road and weather
- Any additional contributing factors to the collision that are present at the scene
- A diagram and narrative of the crash
- The police officer’s evaluation of the drivers themselves
Your obtaining a copy of the crash report is important. In order to establish fault and compensation, this report can be used in negotiations with insurance companies. Additionally, this report can be useful if fault and guilt are debated by the parties involved in the accident.
Having pictures that document the crash scene can be critical evidence in proving fault and determining compensation. So then, as soon as it is safe to do so, take photos. With these photos, you can show the conditions of the accident after the collision as well as the location of the crash.
It is best to include photos of the crash situation from a close-up perspective and also from a wider view. Of course, be certain that the situation is safe before you move to positions to obtain these pictures.
What will you want to include in the photos? Some important aspects to include are the following:
- Damage to the vehicles
- Accident debris
- Skid marks on the road
- All objects involved in the crash
- All injuries to people involved in the crash (including yourself)
Having photos can be pivotal when dealing with difficult and even obstinate at-fault parties. They can also be helpful if you need to disagree with the information presented in the crash report. Detailed photos that show the crash scene from various angles allow persons to see the scene for themselves later on.
With many photos from a variety of perspectives, persons involved in the car accident case can evaluate and draw their own conclusions concerning the cause and effects of the accident.
Obtain the contact information of the individuals involved in the crash
Which persons should you collect contact information from? Be sure to get information from all persons who were involved directly in the car accident. Additionally, any individuals who witnessed the accident can be helpful to your case. And do not forget the contact information of the officer who completed the accident report.
What information should you collect from the persons involved in the crash? If possible, be sure to obtain the following:
- Driver’s license information
- Vehicle plate numbers
- Insurance company contact information
Speak with a car accident attorney about your case
Yes, even at the scene of the car accident, if it is possible to do so, speak to a car accident attorney right away. This step is among the most important that you can take after a car accident. Do not wait. Contact a car accident attorney so that he or she can immediately start to secure your legal footing.
A car accident lawyer can ensure that the information you have collected is used properly and to your benefit. The photos, medical documentation, and official police reports you obtain must all be accurately prepared.
From there, these documents and photos must be submitted correctly into the legal process. What’s more, this information needs to be framed and presented in a coherent and reasonable manner to give you the best chances of justice. An experienced attorney can be extremely beneficial in this process.
Norris Injury Lawyers Can Help You After a Car Accident
Car collisions continue to be a serious problem in the US. According to the National Safety Council, over 70 percent of injuries are related to collisions of 2 or more vehicles.
After suffering an injury from a car accident, you can feel unnerved, shocked, and under tremendous stress. Unfortunately, the problems that come with the accident don’t end with the crash. However, what you do immediately after the accident can help you overcome many of the challenges that you may face.
With the help of a qualified attorney, the evidence you have collected after the accident can be used to firm up your case solidly. This can help you to get the fair compensation you deserve.
To receive the assistance that you need to recover after a car accident financially, please contact Norris Injury Lawyers. Our Alabama car accident attorneys can provide you with legal counsel that puts you on the path to justice. Call us at (800) 477-7510 for a free claim analysis or complete our free consultation form.