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What Should I Do Immediately After A Tractor-Trailer Accident?

What to do immediately after a tractor-trailer accident

Being involved in a tractor-trailer accident can be a terrifying and traumatic experience. In such overwhelming situations, it’s important to know the necessary steps to take immediately after the accident. These steps will not only ensure your safety but also protect your rights and help you pursue fair compensation for your injuries and damages. In this article, we will discuss the actions you should take after a tractor-trailer accident and why hiring a truck accident lawyer can be extremely beneficial.

Prioritize Safety

Your safety and the safety of others should always be your top priority after an accident. If you can safely do so, move your vehicle to a safe location, away from traffic, to prevent further collisions. Turn on your hazard lights to alert other drivers. If you or anyone involved in the accident has sustained serious injuries, call 911 immediately for medical assistance.

Stay at the Scene and Gather Information

It is crucial to stay at the scene of the truck accident, as leaving can have legal consequences. Gather as much information as possible about the accident. This includes the contact and insurance details of all parties involved, as well as any witnesses. Make note of the date, time, and location of the accident. Taking photographs of the accident scene, vehicle damage, and any visible injuries can also be beneficial when filing an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit.

Call Law Enforcement

Contact the police and report the accident. Having an accident report can greatly assist with your insurance claim and establish liability. Cooperate with the responding officers and provide an accurate account of what happened. If you suspect the truck driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, make sure to inform the police officer at the scene. The police report is an important document and will be extremely relevant in the event that you file a claim, so make sure to keep it in a safe place.

Seek Medical Attention

If you’re seriously injured, call 911 or seek emergency care at the nearest hospital. Keep a record of all medical treatments, medications, and expenses related to your injuries.

It’s important to know that even if there is no immediate pain or visible injuries, you could still be injured. Some injuries, such as whiplash or internal bleeding, may not present symptoms immediately but can worsen over time.

Contact Your Insurance Company

Notify your insurance company about the tractor-trailer accident as soon as possible. Provide them with accurate and detailed information about the incident. However, avoid admitting fault or providing recorded statements without consulting a personal injury attorney. Insurance companies are known for trying to minimize payouts, so having legal representation can help ensure you are treated fairly.

Consult with a Personal Injury Attorney

Seeking legal representation from an experienced tractor-trailer accident attorney is crucial to protect your rights and maximize your compensation. A skilled attorney will evaluate your case, explain your rights, handle communication with insurance companies, and help you navigate the legal process. They can also assist in determining liability and gathering evidence to support your claim.

Preserve Evidence

Preserving evidence is vital for building a strong personal injury claim. Keep all documents related to the accident, including medical records, bills, repair estimates, and any correspondence with insurance companies. Additionally, save any physical evidence such as damaged property or torn clothing. Your attorney will utilize this evidence to support your claim and establish liability.

Be Cautious About Settlement Offers

Insurance companies may attempt to settle your claim quickly, often offering a lower amount than you deserve. Before accepting any settlement offer, consult with your personal injury attorney. They will assess the offer and ensure it adequately compensates you for your medical expenses, vehicle damage, lost wages, pain, suffering, and any future costs related to your injuries.

Emotional Support and Rehabilitation

Coping with Trauma

The aftermath of a tractor-trailer accident can leave lasting emotional scars. Coping with trauma and seeking support from friends, family, or mental health professionals is vital for emotional healing. Recognizing the psychological toll of the accident is as important as addressing physical injuries.

Rehabilitation and Recovery

Physical injuries resulting from a tractor-trailer accident may require extensive rehabilitation and long-term care. Accessing appropriate medical treatment and rehabilitation services is crucial for recovery. Your attorney can advocate for comprehensive medical care and assist in securing compensation for ongoing medical expenses.

Understanding Liability

Beyond the initial shock of the accident, understanding liability is crucial. Tractor-trailer accidents often involve complex legal issues, including determining fault and liability. Consulting with a knowledgeable attorney can provide clarity on legal matters and ensure your rights are protected.

Insurance Coverage

Navigating insurance coverage can be daunting, especially in cases involving commercial vehicles like tractor-trailers. Understanding your insurance policy and the coverage available to you is essential. An attorney specializing in personal injury cases can help decipher insurance jargon and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf.

Long-Term Repercussions and Financial Planning

Assessing Future Needs

Injuries sustained in a tractor-trailer accident can have long-term consequences on your health and ability to work. Assessing future needs, such as ongoing medical treatments, rehabilitation, and potential loss of income, is essential for financial planning. Your attorney can help calculate the full extent of damages and pursue compensation for future expenses.

Negotiating Fair Settlements

Reaching a fair settlement with insurance companies requires skillful negotiation and a thorough understanding of the law. Your truck accident lawyer will assess the adequacy of settlement offers and negotiate aggressively on your behalf to ensure you receive fair compensation for all damages incurred.

Contact McWhirter, Bellinger & Associates today

If you’ve been injured in an accident caused by a tractor-trailer, you may be entitled to compensation. The experienced truck accident lawyers at McWhirter, Bellinger & Associates have been representing truck accident victims for decades, and are committed to helping their clients achieve the best outcome possible.

Our experienced truck accident attorneys have an excellent reputation for building extremely strong cases for their clients. Our excellent legal team achieves settlements for most of their clients, but they’re always prepared to argue in front of a judge and jury if necessary.

McWhirter, Bellinger & Associates has seven offices across the Midlands of South Carolina, and our legal team offers free case evaluations to victims of truck crashes. We believe no one should have to suffer due to the negligent or reckless actions of truck drivers or trucking companies, and we’re committed to going head-to-head with powerful insurance companies to help our clients receive the compensation they’re rightfully owed.

Give our experienced attorneys a call today at 803-590-9242. It won’t cost you anything to see if we can help.®