After a vehicle accident, no matter how minor, you may be taken aback by what transpired. You could be severely injured or your car could be seriously damaged. Your top priority should be to protect yourself from further harm and getting the recovery you need. Therefore, it is important to know what to do after a car accident in Altoona. An experienced car accident lawyer could protect your rights and walk you through the legal steps after a crash.
Steps to Take After a Car Accident in Altoona
The essential thing to know about car accident cases in Altoona is what a person needs to do to protect him or herself. There are several steps an individual should take to ensure he or she is safe from further damage. This includes:
- Stopping the vehicle
- Making the accident scene safe
- Notifying the police
- Taking photographs and exchanging information
- Seeking immediate medical care
Stopping the Vehicle
Stopping one’s vehicle is one of the more important things to do after an Altoona car accident. Whenever a person is involved in a car crash, however minor, he or she should always stop. People should never leave the scene of an accident.
Making the Accident Scene Safe
It is critical to make the accident scene safe in order to prevent further injury or damage. People should make sure that no one has been injured and, if he or she is, try to avoid the danger of any further collision. Individuals involved in a wreck should place flares or warning lights around the stationary vehicles and put hazard warning lights on. If the collision occurred on a busy highway, the individuals should stay well away from fast-moving, oncoming traffic.
Notifying the Police
It is imperative to notify the police of the accident even if there are no serious injuries. If there are any injuries, individuals should get ahold of emergency services as quickly as possible.
If possible, the vehicles should not be moved to a safe location before the police arrive. When the police arrive, the individuals involved in the accident have to give an accurate record of what happened. If the police ask if a person is injured, it is better to say that he or she is injured rather than to say no because some car accident injuries do not manifest themselves until later. If there are any third-party witnesses to the accident, individuals may ask them to wait until the police arrive in order to give statements.
Taking Photographs and Exchanging Information
Those involved in the wreck should take photographs to accurately document any damage done. Individuals should take photographs of his or her own vehicle, as well as any other vehicle that was involved in the accident. In addition, he or she needs to exchange insurance and ownership details with the other party or parties. When the police arrive, they will provide the individual with a police report number, and if the accident occurred on a Pennsylvania highway, they are legally required to report the incident.
Seeking Immediate Medical Attention
Everyone involved in the car crash needs to immediately get a medical checkup. Even if a person does not think he or she has been injured, it is advisable to get a medical checkup as soon as possible after the accident. Injuries caused by car accidents often do not become noticeable until several days later. Even low-speed impacts can cause damage. For example, if a person felt dazed by the accident, he or she may have suffered a mild concussion.
After seeking immediate medical care and following up with his or her doctor, he or she may be contacted by a representative of an insurance company. People have to remember that insurance companies are in the business to make money. The individual’s wellbeing is not the insurance company’s priority. It is vital to delay to respond to them until the person has had the opportunity to consult with a seasoned personal injury attorney. Furthermore, the injured person needs to keep all the paperwork he or she has related to the accident in a file.
Contact an Altoona Lawyer About What to Do After a Car Accident
It is crucial to know what to do after a car accident in Altoona. Fortunately, an experienced car crash lawyer could help you with getting the medical treatment you need, gathering evidence, filing a claim, and getting the compensation you deserve. If you were injured in a car crash, contact us at Marcus & Mack today and set up a consultation.