What Do I Do After a Truck Accident?
Being involved in any type of accident involving a truck or commercial vehicle can be devastating. Commercial trucks can cause catastrophic damage, and you will need to know how to react if you have been involved in this type of accident. After you are involved in an accident with a commercial truck, you will likely be flustered and may not think clearly. Despite this, it is important to remember a few rules that will help you with a personal injury claim. Your actions after a truck accident can greatly affect your chances of obtaining maximum compensation.
- Every person involved in an accident should seek medical attention, even if they don’t feel any pain. Adrenaline can mask pain and other issues, such as whiplash, can take time to become obvious. Seeing a doctor means a trained professional will examine you for any problems that you might not realize are problems yet. Also, creating a medical record of your accident means that you’ll have an official record of injuries if you need to make a personal injury claim.
- Contact law enforcement quickly. After a serious truck accident, it’s important to call authorities as soon as possible. Doing so will make sure that help arrives for you, your passengers, and anyone else who might need it after the accident.
- If physically able, take photos at the scene. Take them from multiple angles and include shots of your vehicle, the truck, and injuries. The police who respond should also take photos.
- Gather as much information as possible. This includes the names, addresses, and identifying information about not only the truck driver (ex: their driver's license number, name, and insurance information), but any other people who were at the scene and can serve as eyewitnesses to the accident. After you leave the scene, it can become nearly impossible to track down everyone who was involved and it is crucial that you have the information you need to contact them. You should also gather the vehicle DOT license number for the truck and trailer.
- Report the accident to your insurance company. However, be careful about what you say. While the person you speak to might come off as friendly, they’re ultimately working in the interest of their company. This means their job is to make sure you accept as little payment as possible. If the other insurance company calls you, remember that you’re not required to speak to them, and you shouldn’t. Instead, direct them to your insurer or to your attorney.