How to Approach the Scene of a Car Accident
A car accident happens every 60 seconds, according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That totals nearly 6 million car accidents a year. Of that number, almost one-third involve multi-vehicle collisions.
It only takes one driver who is distracted for a moment to trigger a massive pile-up of cars, trucks, trailers, and motorcycles all crashing into one another. The probability of serious injuries and death from multi-vehicle collisions is high.
To avoid complicating a car collision scene or harming the victims, our Skilled Orlando car accident lawyers have put together some tips to help you safely navigate a car accident emergency when you approach the crash scene.
When Approaching an Accident Scene, You Should Follow These Suggestions
Act quickly to provide emergency care to the victims.
If you are one of the first drivers to witness the crash and suspect that one or more of the involved vehicle occupants are injured, call 911 immediately. Park your vehicle a safe distance from the accident before you call. Safety experts generally recommend you stop away from danger, out of the traffic lanes, and turn on your emergency flashers.
Do not attempt to move any of the injured people unless they are in immediate danger. Moving injured accident victims can turn minor injuries into serious problems. Turn off the ignition switches on vehicles involved in the crash to reduce the risk of fire and wait for emergency vehicles and police to arrive.
If you witness a car accident, stay at the scene until the police have arrived.
Your eyewitness statement can help the accident investigators determine the cause of the accident and who may be responsible. The information you provide might also assist the crash victims who may need to pursue legal action as a result of the crash.
For collision victims to recover the money they need to pay for medical care and lost wages after a car accident, they must know what insurance coverage is available. In Florida, all motorists must carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage to pay for their emergency medical expenses, future medical costs, and lost wages. However, PIP coverage may not be sufficient to cover the costs associated with serious injuries.
If another driver was responsible for the accident, their insurance might provide additional compensation for the other injured victims. If you remember how the accident happened, provide a witness statement to help the crash victims recover the compensation they deserve.
Slow down and do not panic. Remain calm and assess your surroundings.
Drivers who panic at the scene of the accident can cause another accident or more damage. Some drivers overreact by swerving their cars or making a sudden exit and cutting off other vehicles to avoid the first accident and related traffic congestion. Slow your car, activate your hazard lights and stay alert for sudden changing circumstances.
Do not stare or gawk at the accident as you continue to drive safely.
Keep your eyes focused on the road and what is ahead of you. Avoid “rubbernecking.” This can cause a slowdown that puts you, your passengers, and others on the road at risk. Paying too much attention to the accident can cause you to miss brake lights ahead and dangerous road debris. If you want to help, park your car first.
Pay attention to signs, detours, traffic patterns, and other dangerous situations around the car accident site.
Be a defensive driver and scan the traffic ahead, just not what is in front of you. This will increase your chances of being able to spot a problem while still having enough time to react. Also, keep a safe distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you to decrease the chance of a rear-end collision.
If You Have Questions About A Serious Car Accident Scene in Central Florida, We Have Answers
If you or a loved one were involved in a car accident, you need to contact an experienced Orlando Car Accident Attorney immediately. Florida drivers have only 14 days to seek initial medical attention to receive PIP insurance benefits after an accident.
The damages from a serious car accident are not always covered in a settlement from your insurance company. Many times, the initial settlement offer is barely enough to cover the basic costs associated with your accident.
Trust the Dedicated Car Accident Attorneys at Michael T. Gibson, P.A. to Protect Your Rights
Our personal injury attorneys are well-equipped and armed with years of legal experience helping people file car insurance claims and personal injury lawsuits. We can help you obtain full compensation for your medical bills, future medical treatment, loss of wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and more. For a free consultation, fill out the quick contact form on our website or call (407) 490-1271 to discuss your legal options in greater detail.
Orlando, FL 32814