What Not to Do After an Atlanta Truck Accident
Truck accidents in the Atlanta area can cause serious injuries or fatalities. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that there were 155 truck crash fatalities in 2014 and 182 in 2015. Nationally, in 2015, out of 32,166 fatal crashes, 3,838 of them involved at least one commercial truck. Accidents involving trucks often involve more drivers and vehicles than usual. There are many potential causes for these accidents. They include:
- Violations of truck driver laws
- Impaired driving
- Distracted driving
- Tire blowouts
- Impaired driving
- Unsafe road conditions
Any truck accident is traumatic. You may be frightened, confused, or intimidated by the other party to the accident. To protect your rights, below are some of the things you should not do after a truck accident.
Fail to Notify the Authorities
You must report the accident immediately to the police if anyone is killed, if anyone is injured, or if there is property damage greater than $500. Calling 911 may also be required by your insurance company.
A police report may be necessary to determine who was at fault for the accident and will also include important details about the accident. You should report the accident regardless of how the other party feels about it.
Fail to Seek Medical Treatment
You may think you have not been injured, or that your injuries are minor, but some injuries may not show up until hours or even days later. The shock and adrenaline may block the sensation of pain. Failure to obtain prompt medical care may lead to more damage and affect your chances for recovery. Therefore, you should obtain a medical evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment as soon as possible.
Leave the Scene of the Accident
Georgia has strict laws regarding leaving the scene of an accident; in many cases, doing so can be prosecuted as a crime. You should never leave the scene of a car accident. Call 911 and wait for help to arrive.
In the emotional aftermath of an accident, people often say things such as “it was all my fault,” whether or not that is true. Statements like this may be used against you by insurance companies, or by other parties to the accident. When speaking to the authorities, just state the simple facts without giving your opinions.
Fail to Document the Accident
Even if the police or another party to the accident is documenting the accident, you should gather as much information as possible. You may find it difficult to recall details later.
This may include:
- Contact information for all of the parties and their insurance information
- Witness information
- Photos of the scene and the vehicles involved
- The date, time and road or weather conditions
Speak to Insurance Companies Without Your Attorney
The insurance company wants to settle your claim for as little money as possible. The other party’s insurance company may ask you for a statement about the accident and may use that statement against you in a later lawsuit. Before talking to the insurance company, always consult an experienced truck accident attorney.
Enter Into a Settlement Agreement for Less Than You Deserve
Do not enter into settlement negotiations, accept a settlement agreement, or take a check as a full and final payment without consulting a truck accident attorney first. An experienced attorney can determine whether the offer would be fair compensation for the losses you incurred and help represent your interests throughout the negotiation process.
Speak or Act in Haste
In the aftermath of an accident, emotions run high. Try not to become angry with the other parties, or make any decisions in haste, without seeking legal counsel. Claims or lawsuits resulting from truck accidents involve complicated legal processes. You need an attorney who will guide you through the legal process and who is dedicated to protecting your rights.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a truck accident, please call Hasner Law at 678-888-HURT (4878), or contact Hasner Law online. We offer free consultations with no obligation, and our experienced truck accident attorneys are standing by to help you now.