It’s easy to imagine how destructive a collision with a big rig can be. Even minor accidents can cause an immense amount of damage to people, vehicles, roads and buildings.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 67 percent of trucking deaths happen to those in smaller vehicles. If you were involved in a crash with a big rig, there are several steps you should take to protect your interests-both from a liability standpoint and for compensatory damages. This is especially true if you suffered injuries due to the other driver’s negligence. There may be several people responsible for a big rig accident, including the driver, owner, manufacturer and employer; however, the process of obtaining damages from any one of these parties is often complicated and time consuming. A personal-injury lawyer in New York City can offer legal advice and support as you attempt to recover damages. Call Jaroslawicz & Jaros, PLLC at 212.227.2780 for a free, private consultation. In the meantime, read on for 10 steps to take after an accident with a truck:
- Make sure everyone is okay.
Be sure to check on the injuries of other drivers and passengers involved in the crash as soon as possible. If there are injuries, call 911 immediately.
- Document your injuries.
If you have injuries, you should seek medical attention and photograph every wound. Keep all medical records and photographs as evidence for your claim.
- Contact your insurance company.
You must notify your insurance company immediately after the accident.
- Get contact details from any witnesses at the scene.
In most cases, there are people around who witnessed the accident, and they frequently see crucial elements that drivers or passengers miss. Speak to them, and get their contact information.
- Avoid accidentally admitting fault.
Although you should speak to people at the scene, it is vital that you are very careful about what you say. Do not discuss what you should have done to avoid the crash because you may implicate yourself inadvertently.
- Consult a lawyer.
A personal-injury attorney with experience handling truck accident cases can provide invaluable guidance during the claims process. He or she can answer your questions and compile the necessary evidence for your case.
- Provide your attorney with all the facts.
While you should never admit fault, you have to be honest with your attorney. If you made a driving error, he or she will know how to handle the situation in your best interests.
- Conduct your own investigation into the cause of the accident.
Much like your insurance company, you should also conduct an investigation. Your attorney can help you uncover the facts. Many scenarios and possibilities can cause truck accidents.
- Evaluate all the damages.
You need to identify your losses and the losses of other parties involved. Typical damages include both economic and non-economic losses, including medical expenses, lost wages and emotional distress.
- Identify potential candidates for the lawsuit.
Truck accident lawsuits often have several defendants. These may include the driver, the truck manufacturer or the trucking company. Following these 10 steps can strengthen your case. For further assistance, call Jaroslawicz & Jaros, PLLC today at 212.227.2780.