Truckers don’t have it so easy. Always on the road, always on a task and a haul, they must and have to expect anything. A lot can happen during these and they have their nerves, skill and patience tested.
The sad thing about this job is that sometimes you get in an accident that can ruin your haul, and result in heavy damages to your truck, your cargo, trailer and other participants of the accident. In some unlucky cases, it can result in a lot of injuries difficult to treat or eventually death which is the worst possible outcome you can have.
Being on a road 24/7 has its advantages but it also holds disadvantages. One of those is just what we mentioned – accidents, and today we will talk a bit about them. We will discuss what are the things you need to do, what are the steps to follow if you are in one. We will also offer you help in a form of a truck accident attorney that will take care of you and look out for your best interests.
We all know you are anxious to get started so we will try not to procrastinate the meat and potatoes of the article anymore. Here are the five steps to follow if you are in a truck accident:
1. Treat your injuries
After any type of accident, you should be your priority. Your health needs to be in order if you are trying to get out o the accident alive. Call for an ambulance, go to a hospital to get everything checked up and talk to your medical care specialist about any issues you are having. If your accident has caused severe health problems you need to be rushed to the emergency room and get the help you need. You have to understand that truck accidents are usually pretty heavy due to obvious reasons. Being in a minor fender bender with two cars is not the same as a fender bender with two trucks or a truck and a vehicle. Due to weights, dimensions and the weight and force of the cargo in the trailer you often have complications in every crash scene. There are times when you might feel like you got with minor bruises and scratches, maybe a broken bone or two, but after some time you may experience more severe issues, like hidden bleeding, broken ribs, punctured or squashed organs and so on. This is why you first need to take care of yourself and why you must not take any type of injury lightly. Get thoroughly checked up, do not pass on anything and right after you are cleared by medical staff you can proceed to the next steps.
2. Exchange info
After you have sported your medical situation and after you have established a clean bill of health you need to exchange the info with the truck operator or with the other party involved in your truck accident. This is a standard procedure like in any other accident. Get basic contact information and insurance information, and since a truck accident is a bit specific, try to get the truck operator’s employment info as well. This will allow you to build a case against the driver’s employer instead of against the driver.
3. Information and evidence
The third important thing is to gather whatever information and evidence from the scene you can. If you can physically do that after the accident, try to locate your phone or camera or any image or video recording device and take as many pictures and videos as possible. Note the surrounding area, take pictures of the surrounding traffic, the signs, traffic signals or any other factors that will help your case. If there were witnesses to the accident try to get some sort of a preliminary statement from them. Either write down or videotape it if the witnesses will allow it. Get their information as well so you have it for alteration as the investigation unfolds. The best thing is to look around and see if there are any businesses or companies around you that have security cameras and approach them regarding them giving you the recordings of that particular time.
4. Make no statements
This step here is the key to a successful case when you are in a truck accident. After such an accident the most important thing you should do is never talk to any insurance company representative and do not give any statements at all. This is very important to know because typically the insurers and their on-field representatives are working against you, which is why it is highly important to avoid them. At least without the presence of your legal representative. These insurance company representatives will look for any evidence, and sign any word or statement that they can use to reduce their losses and to reduce the settlement payment as much as possible.
5. Get an experienced truck accident lawyer
No matter how clear or simple your case in this accident may look and how fast you think you will resolve it and get your money, some things can get very complicated and even take a turn for the other side. This is why you need an experienced advocate that will have you, your health and generally your best interest in mind. You need a lawyer that knows what to expect, what to look for, how to combat those low-ball offers you will get from insurance companies and how to make your case. These are the guys that do nothing but this and they have specialized in this field. They will know at least two steps in advance, what is awaiting you, what will be requested and what you need to do or say, and most importantly to whom, to make a firm case for yourself.
So, as you can see, we have listed 5 things you need to do after you have been through a truck accident. Some of these things are instinctively done while others people forget about and when they do, they cause themselves more issues that they don’t need. This is why, after you treat your potential injuries, you need to follow these other steps if you want to give yourself the best odds of going through this easily. The last point on taking a lawyer does not necessarily have to be the last thing, you can hire or call your lawyer right after you have been treated by the medical staff and cleared for injuries or traumas.