The car accident attorneys at Brylak Law realize that car accidents can be a harrowing experience, regardless of the seriousness of the car accident in San Antonio. Even low impact accidents can produce significant property damage and personal injury. Many people become very confused following an accident, especially if they suffer any sort of head injury, and the protocol regarding what to do can be cloudy. It is always important for anyone prior to an accident to have a good idea of what they should do immediately following a wreck. Knowing what you would do beforehand can be very important and time effective. Time is of the essence in accidents that produce serious personal injury or could result in a fire or other tragedy on the roadways. The car accident attorneys at Brylak Law will always remind their clients that there is a general checklist of what any motorist should do following a car accident in San Antonio.
Stay at the Scene of the Wreck
Regardless of the perceived seriousness of an accident, it is important to stay at the scene of an accident at least until after driver information is exchanged. If the accident involves serious personal injury or the vehicles are not movable, the drivers who are involved should wait for police to arrive. If an ambulance is also needed, it is important to make sure you are examined by paramedics when time will allow, regardless of how insignificant an injury may appear. In addition, leaving the scene of an accident involving serious injury or death could result in being charged with hit-and-run, which is a very serious charge that could also result in being held responsible for the entire accident. The smart decision is to stay on the scene and look for witnesses, including other drivers and passengers. Your San Antonio car accident attorneys will always advise to never admit fault to other drivers or the police. Just as in a criminal case, it can be used against you when contributory negligence is assessed.
Check On Drivers and Passengers
The first priority should be to check on the other drivers and passengers, as well as passengers in your vehicle. Get as much information as possible concerning the condition of all passengers in the accident, and particular details concerning those who are seriously injured or a potential fatality. It is common for injured parties in an accident to be rendered unconscious as a result of the crash. Never attempt to remove a lodged passenger unless their life is in real peril, as this could also create more injuries during removal and complicate the adjudication of the accident to your detriment.
Call the Police
If you are the only individual with enough capacity to call the police, it should be done immediately. Police protocol should also include an ambulance when necessary, so be prepared to tell the dispatcher as much information as you know. Your San Antonio car accident attorneys will remind you that an auto accident can also be a crime scene, especially when any impaired drivers are part of the collision. Police will want to do a thorough investigation of the accident for official accident report purposes as well as interviewing everyone possible. Your San Antonio car accident attorneys always recommend being compliant with officer requests, but answer questions directly with no additional information.
Exchange Information and Wait on Police When Necessary
When accidents occur with minimal damage and the vehicles can be driven away, it’s fine to merely exchange information in some cases. However, many drivers will want an official police report filed for insurance and financial damage recovery purposes, so always stay in this situation until police officers have inspected the accident. Be prepared to give a statement to the police, but also be cautious about how much information you provide. This could potentially impact any financial claim you may have as a result of the wreck. The official police report will also be reviewed by an accident reconstruction specialist who will determine causation and assign a comparative negligence percentage for each driver.
Seek Medical Treatment
It is important to seek medical treatment immediately following any accident because time is of the essence and internal or soft-tissue injuries can manifest later. Internal injuries can be particularly dangerous, but soft-tissue injuries such as whiplash or pulled back muscles and cartilage damage can also develop into very serious personal injuries. Back injuries are not always apparent and can be lingering medical problems after the fact, and your San Antonio car accident attorneys will want as much medical documentation as possible with a timely injury report. Even minor accidents can produce long-term injuries.
Call the Insurance Companies
Initially you will need to report the accident to your insurance company, but you may want to discuss the accident with the insurance providers of the other drivers when they are potentially largely responsible. This may also give an indication of how difficult collecting damages may be. Never admit even a partial fault or agree to any settlement on the first contact because there may always be a potential for multiple negligent parties. Additionally, the negligent driver’s insurance claims adjuster is always concerned about a reduced payout to settle the accident at a low expense to the company.
Contact the Car Accident Attorneys San Antonio Residents Trust
If you are involved in an accident in Texas you should contact San Antonio car accident attorneys from Brylak Law at (866) 496-3815 for a full evaluation of your auto accident.