Have you been injured in a car accident in Wichita Falls?
When people are involved in a car accident in Wichita Falls or anywhere else in Texas or Oklahoma, they are often in shock. This shock could be fairly quick, or it could last a long time with the adrenaline masking most of their pain and injuries. While the adrenaline may help you deal with the immediate after effects of being in an accident, it may prevent you from taking into consideration the long-term effects. Because of the shock and adrenaline you experience after you’ve been in an accident, it’s easy to make mistakes that could negatively impact your legal rights and your right to recovery.
Luckily, our Wichita Falls car accident lawyer has offered some helpful tips on what to do after an accident so you can ensure your legal rights are protected.
Get to Safety
First and foremost, you should get to safety. If you’ve been in an accident on the highway, you should take the necessary steps to get off the road. Many drivers are distracted by their cell phones and may not see the accident. If you stay in or near your car, you run the risk of another vehicle hitting you again, especially if the accident happens on busy road.
Call 911 and Request an Ambulance if Needed
Once you have ensured your safety, you should call 911 for the police to come investigate and most importantly, request an ambulance if anyone was injured. If someone is seriously injured, it’s important not to move them unless you need to move them to keep them out of harm’s way.
By having the police come to the accident, you ensure everyone’s safety because the police can set up road blocks and manage the accident effectively. Secondly, police will create an accident report that documents what all happened, who was involved in the accident, and who was at fault. The accident report will be important evidence for your personal injury claim.
Collect Witness Information
It’s not enough to rely on the police, however. As wonderful as police can be, we are all human and we all make mistake. Therefore, you shouldn’t rely on the police to get all the information. Take it upon yourself to talk with any witness who saw the accident happen and collect their names, contact information, and a statement from them about what happened if possible.
Take Pictures and Videos
Use your phone to take pictures and videos of the accident scene, both of the vehicles involved, the weather conditions at the time, and your injuries. These pieces of evidence will be crucial when pursuing your car accident claim.
Seek Medical Treatment Immediately
As we mentioned at the start of this post, the shock and adrenaline people experience when they are in an accident often masks their pain and injuries. Because of this, it is always smart to go to the hospital to get checked after an accident. If you delay or avoid getting medical treatment, the insurance company may use that as an excuse to not pay your claim.
Cautious When Speaking With Police and Adjusters
Be aware that anything you say to the police or to any insurance adjusters may be used against you. Therefore, you should be very careful with the information you provide them. While you will have to talk to the police, we recommend that you speak with a Wichita Falls car accident lawyer before you speak to an adjuster or sign any forms, or at the very least, read our article on how to deal with insurance adjusters.
Contact a Wichita Falls Car Accident Lawyer
Generally, it’s smart if you do not discuss your case with anyone but your lawyer. There could be a lot of different factors that caused your accident like the other driver’s negligence or a defective product like the brakes of the other drivers car. Because of this, it’s a good idea to get to a lawyer early on so they can conduct a thorough investigation of your accident while all the evidence is still fresh.
These are just a few of the key steps people need to take to protect their legal rights after a Wichita Falls car accident. Be sure to also read our article on the 10 ways to maximize your accident and injury claim. To learn more about personal injury, you can download our free book, The Traveler’s Guide to the Universe of Personal Injury.
If you or anyone you know has been involved in a car accident, or any other type of accident, in Wichita Falls, call us today at 940-569-4000, or fill out our contact form to schedule a free, confidential, no-obligation consultation. We will give you a free evaluation of your case and offer you some helpful advice even if you decide not to hire us.