In Texas, we drive a lot – whether it’s to take our kids to school or to get to and from work – we spend a lot of time in our vehicles. Most of the time we take our safety while driving for granted, only focusing on getting to our destination on time and not about getting into a car wreck. Unfortunately, Texas car accidents are common. In fact, 3,896 people were killed in auto accidents in our great state in 2020, a 7.54% increase over the previous year and 12,107 crashes resulting in physical injury were reported with 14,656 people sustaining a serious injury. Since roadway collisions are so common and injuries so often result, it is important for everyone to know what you should do immediately after a car accident.
Steps To Take After Being injured In an Auto Accident
If you were a driver or passenger injured in an auto accident, the first thing you should do is move yourself and your vehicle to a safe location if you are physically able. Put on your emergency or hazard signal lights to alert oncoming cars, trucks, and other vehicles to the fact that a crash has occurred and people are present on the road. Make sure that you do not leave the scene of the accident unless it is with emergency medical personnel who are transporting you for treatment.
After the people involved in the car accident are moved away from danger, the next steps to take include:
- Calling Law Enforcement: It is crucial to report the car accident to law enforcement right away so they can investigate and create an official accident report. This report is one of the most important pieces of evidence in your claim for damages because it will help establish who is at fault or who caused the accident. When the police arrive, be sure to tell them exactly what happened but do not guess or speculate. If they ask if you are hurt, don’t say no – say you are not sure because injuries very commonly are felt only hours after the impact of a collision.
- Collecting Necessary Information: You will need to gather information from the other parties involved in your car accident (both drivers and passengers), including names, contact information, vehicle descriptions, driver’s license numbers, and insurance company names and policy numbers. You will also need to get information from any witnesses, including their names and contact information.
- Documenting the Accident Scene: Use your mobile phone to take pictures of the vehicles involved in the accident, including the areas of damage and the positioning of each vehicle. Document the area around the crash, showing what you saw when driving up to the location and what is around the scene. Look around for security or surveillance cameras because the footage can be helpful and show a video of how the entire wreck happened.
- Seeking Out Medical Treatment: Even if you don’t feel hurt, you may have suffered an injury and not be feeling the effects. It is important to be medically evaluated following a car accident even if you think your injuries are minor so that you can ensure you are safe and healthy, and so that there is documentation that connects your damages to the crash. You can and should also take pictures or videos of your injuries and the injuries of anyone else in your vehicle to document the damages caused by the crash.
- Consulting a Personal Injury Lawyer: While it is likely not the first thing you think about after being hit by another driver, it is important to at least talk to a personal injury lawyer after being injured in an auto accident. The facts of each individual’s car accident are unique so what one person you know might have experienced in their wreck will likely not be the same as what happens to you. Talking to someone who has spent their entire career helping car accident victims is a good idea, and with our law firm, such consultations are free and available in both Spanish and English.
Weslaco Car Accident Lawyers
If you have been injured in a South Texas car accident, you may not know what to do. We hope the list of steps we provided above can be helpful, but we know it can’t help you resolve everything on your own. By hiring experienced legal representation, you won’t have to worry as much about your next steps. Contact the Weslaco, Texas car accident lawyers at Ezequiel Reyna, Jr. Law Office today to discuss your case in a free consultation. There is limited time to act following a motor vehicle crash in Texas and evidence will disappear as the scene is cleaned up and vehicles are repaired, so don’t wait too long to reach out.