Having an accident of any kind on the roads is a terrifying experience, and a commercial truck accident in Indiana is no exception. An accident with a large 18-wheeler or semi is one of the worst fears of many motorists. If you or someone you love has been in a truck crash, an Indianapolis car accident lawyer can answer your questions about pursuing compensation through an Indiana personal injury claim.
At the Scene of a Commercial Truck Accident in Indiana
Being injured in a commercial truck accident is a traumatic and potentially life-altering event, but it’s important that you stay as calm as possible and take appropriate action once you’ve been in a crash. The outcome of your injuries and damage may be determined by what happens while you’re at the scene of the accident.
First, try to move your vehicle out of the road if it is safe to do so and you are able to move without causing further injury to yourself. Wrecks can be a dangerous obstacle for other vehicles on the road. For the safety of other drivers and to prevent the possibility of further accident, move your car off the road and advise the other driver to do the same.
Gather as much information as possible. This includes the truck driver’s information, company details, driver’s license number, the tracking number on the truck, tags, and insurance policy details. Write down everything you remember about what happened before the accident. If you are able, take pictures of the vehicles and the scene of the crash.
Documentation is key in a successful claim. If the accident was the fault of the driver, you may be entitled to damages to cover the cost of your medical expenses, property damage, and time missed from work.
At the scene, answer the police officer’s questions factually and do not admit blame. Don’t apologize for the accident and don’t blame the truck driver. Give the officer your information and if you don’t know the answer to a specific question, don’t guess, just tell the officer you don’t know. An attorney can help you prepare for a more detailed statement later on when the adrenaline of the accident is gone.
After You’ve Left the Scene of a Commercial Truck Accident in Indiana
First, seek medical attention for your injuries. You may have been checked out at the accident site, but you should still see a doctor or go to the hospital for further evaluation of your injuries, even if they don’t hurt that much or don’t appear to be too serious. Doing so will create a medical record of your injuries, a document that is admissible in court and can factor into the success of your claim. Proving the extent of your injuries is required if you wish to recover the costs of your treatment.
Additionally, many do not realize the severity of the injuries until days later, but the insurance company or at-fault party will claim that because you waited, your injuries were not serious. Don’t let them make that argument. Get your injuries examined and request a copy of the medical record.
Notify the insurance company you’ve had an accident. Say as little to the adjuster as possible and do not allow anything you say to be recorded. You should decline to give any statement until after you have spoken with an Indianapolis car accident lawyer who can prepare you to answer honestly and factually in a way that will not minimize the severity of your claim.
Contact a lawyer. A lawyer with experience in commercial trucking accidents can help you determine liability in your accident and seek the damages you are entitled to for your injuries.