When you are involved in a car accident, the steps you take in the moments immediately after the collision play a big role in your personal injury claim’s success later. Even if you are not sure if you will file a personal injury claim, take the following steps anyway. After receiving a diagnosis from your doctor, you might have a different opinion on whether pursuing monetary compensation for your damages is necessary.
Make Sure You and All Others are Safe
The very first thing you should do is check on everybody involved in the collision. If you or somebody else needs emergency medical care, call 911. In critical situations, prompt treatment can be the difference between life and death.
Call the Police
Call the local police to have an officer dispatched to the scene. Once the officer arrives, fill out a police report with him or her.
Take Copious Photographs
Take as many photographs as you feel are necessary to completely illustrate what happened and how you were injured. A few specific shots to take are:
- The orientation of the vehicles. Getting a shot that shows the traffic flow, the skids on the road, and where the vehicles “landed” after the collision will set the scene;
- Your injury. Take photos of every area of your body where you feel – or know – you were injured;
- The damage to the vehicles. This, too, can illustrate the point of impact and each driver’s actions; and
- Street signs, surrounding buildings, and anything else that shows the geographic location of the collision.
Exchange Key Information with Others at the Scene
Give the other driver your contact and insurance information, and be sure to take a copy of his or hers, as well. Do not leave the scene without the following:
- The attending officer’s badge number and contact information;
- A copy of the official police report;
- The other driver’s insurance information;
- Contact information for any witnesses to the accident; and
- The photographs you took to illustrate the scene.
Seek Medical Attention for Yourself
After leaving the scene of the accident, seek medical attention for yourself regardless of how badly you feel like you were injured. Certain types of injury, like traumatic brain injuries, are not immediately obvious but can become severe if they are left untreated. In addition to helping yourself recover physically, having documentation that you received prompt medical care will help your personal injury claim.
Work with an Experienced Itasca Car Accident Lawyer
If you are injured in a collision with a negligent driver, you have the right to pursue monetary compensation for your damages with the aid of an experienced car accident lawyer. To learn more about pursuing a personal injury claim with our team, contact Newland & Newland, LLP today to set up your initial legal consultation in our office. We serve clients in the Arlington Heights, Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Libertyville, Mundelein, Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg, Elk Grove, and Itasca areas.
(image courtesy of Felix Russel Saw)