Taking a road trip from time to time is great for your family. Bonding over new adventures can help broaden your horizons, bring a fresh perspective, and create lasting memories. While there are so many checklists you go through before embarking on your drive, you can’t be careful enough, especially while travelling with kids. The chances of getting into road mishaps are slim but not zero, especially with heavy transportation. For instance, trucks are large and heavy vehicles that could cause significant damage to your vehicle and injuries in the worst-case scenario. Therefore, it would help to know what to do if you find yourself in these kinds of situations. Here are some things you should do to protect your family on a road trip in the event of an accident.
Run a quick check
The heated emotions following an accident could cause you to lash out at the offending driver. We highly suggest you keep your cool as the situation needs to be dealt with practically. Check yourself and your traveling members for any signs of injuries and distress. The best action would be to express concern for the passengers and avoid talking too much until the authorities arrive.
Reach out to the police
Regardless of whether anyone was injured, it is always important to call 911. An officer will arrive at the accident scene within a few minutes of contacting the authorities and collect your official statement. The police will also create an accident report, assess the damage, speak to witnesses and determine how many ambulances you need depending on the casualties. Resist the urge to let the driver go because you think the accident was too minor to report.
Seek medical attention
Anyone who sustained significant injuries should get immediate medical attention. Ensure you call an ambulance while you perform first aid on the casualties before help arrives. If you are not too badly hurt and would like to wait for the police to arrive, ensure you go to the hospital as soon as possible. If you wait too long to get a medical evaluation, you might notice injuries after a few weeks, during which it will be too late to file a claim and get compensated. Therefore, you would rather get a clean bill of health rather than shrug off your injuries.
Capture photographic evidence
The next step after calling the police and ambulance would be to take as many photos of the accident as possible. Ensure you capture the vehicle, the debris on the road, and the name of the street for easy identification. It would also help to take photos of your injuries, torn clothes, and any bleeding that may have occurred due to the accident. You could present these photos to the jury or your insurance company to prove the severity of the accident and to show you need adequate compensation.
Call your lawyer
Motor accidents are highly complicated, and it would be far-fetched to think you can handle them independently. The other driver could also deny you compensation, forcing you to take matters to court. It is advisable to contact a truck accident attorney, who will explain the course of action and guide you through the process of filing a lawsuit for the compensation you deserve.
There is a chance that a few people saw what happened and can explain who was at fault in that situation. Approach the group gathered around the accident scene and ask them whether they can explain their side of the story. Please don’t forget to record their names and telephone numbers in case the authorities or your lawyer would like to reach out to them later. Since the police are also responsible for talking to bystanders at the accident scene, you don’t have to worry about recording any statements from anyone.
Exchange contact information with the driver
If the driver pulls a hit-and-run stunt on you, try to capture their license plate and get a clear vehicle description. However, if the driver is courteous enough to stay, ensure you exchange crucial information such as their full name, address, telephone number, license plate number, and auto insurance policy number. Sometimes, the truck could be in another person’s name, such as the employer. Therefore, it would help to get the employer’s full name and number.
Don’t be in a rush to fix your vehicle
We understand the urgency of taking your car to the garage and getting it ready to hit the road again. However, your vehicle is the primary source of evidence and will indicate how bad the accident was. Even though the car looks fine outside, it could have sustained considerable internal damage that would be costly to fix. Therefore, it would help to get a vehicle appraisal.
We hope this article has helped you know the proper steps following an accident on a road trip. Remember to follow the doctor’s instructions if you want a speedy recovery.