Truck accidents are quite devastating. A truck is large and heavy, which makes it way harder to stop. Especially in cities like Carrollton, Texas, where there are lots of trucks passing by, there is always the risk of a truck accident happening.
For example, in November 2023, A Carrolton crash involving 6 vehicles occurred on the Northbound lanes of I-35E. Three of the vehicles were tractor-trailers. Because of the damage and one person suffering a minor injury, they may need a Carrollton truck accident lawyer to settle this. Check this site for more information.
If you’re ever involved in a truck accident, you need to know what to do next if you manage to survive it. Here are 8 steps you should go through:
1. Get Medical Help
The first thing you should do is seek medical help if someone is injured. At the same time, there is always the possibility of being injured without being aware of it, so it’s best to get checked by a physician afterward. You should also call for an ambulance if anyone else at the scene is injured, so they can get the treatment they need.
Bear in mind that if you refuse medical attention, it might end up being used against you in court. For example, if you realize later that you suffered some injuries, it would be difficult to prove that the accident caused them.
2. Call the Police
An ambulance is not the only one that should be at the scene. You should also contact the police, as law enforcement must know about any truck accident in the area. When the police eventually get there, they will file an official report that includes information about what happened and what caused the accident.
If possible, do this before doing anything else, even if it doesn’t seem to be any physical damage or any serious injury. Soft tissue injuries are not noticeable immediately, and you may not know anything until later. If you need medical attention in the end, the police report will help substantiate your claim, and add more clarity.
3. Don’t Agree to Sign Anything
You may end up talking to the insurance company of the other party, and even if it’s tempting, make sure you don’t say too much. You shouldn’t say a lot to your insurance company either. Make sure to not elaborate on details, but only state facts. Also, you shouldn’t reveal too much to the other witnesses or drivers at the scene.
4. Don’t Talk More Than You Have To
Remember, “you have the right to remain silent” applies here as well. Keep your voice cool and measured, and don’t try to lash out on the other people involved in the accident. You may end up saying something mean that will only put you in a tough situation. Running your mouth may actually do more harm than good.
Also, no matter what you do, do not admit to liability or fault – even if you know the truck accident was, indeed, your fault. You don’t need to lie (actually, you shouldn’t lie), but you shouldn’t go diving into all the details with the cops either. Save that conversation for your lawyer. You may be partially at fault, but the other driver may have their fault as well – so, you don’t need to take everything on yourself.
5. Collect Evidence
Make sure to collect as much evidence as you can while you’re on-site. You should take pictures of the scene and all vehicles that got damaged. Take photos of any visible injuries you’ve suffered as well. Also, make sure to take notes.
6. Write Down Witness Information
If you are well enough to do this, you might want to write down some witness information. A witness is any person that may have seen how the crash went down – a bystander that was not involved with the accident in any way.
Now, you do not have to get statements out of them – it’s the police’s job to do that. However, a witness’ testimony may make the difference between a successful case and a lost one. Remember, once they walk away from the scene, it might become difficult to track them down – which can put you to a disadvantage if they possess valuable information.
7. Get the Truck Appraisal
You might be tempted to take your truck straight to a car service and have it repaired, but you may want to hold onto that thought. Once your truck is repaired, you won’t have anything to prove that it suffered the damage you might claim it did. To get your insurance money, you’ll need to get an appraisal.
Remember, internal damage is not always easily seen. You need a trained eye to see exactly what has been damaged. Otherwise, you might just skip over something that would cost you a great deal of money in the future. If there is such internal damage after a truck accident, then you need to catch it right away.
8. Contact a Lawyer
Now it’s time to reach out to a good personal injury lawyer. This lawyer is an expert in this area, so they should know the best way to handle the case and what to do to bring you the compensation you deserve.
The Bottom Line
You should consider yourself very lucky to survive a truck accident, so it is essential to know what to do next. You can follow these tips to make things go smoothly.