A road trip is a perfect getaway to refresh your mind. Road trips are a great way to view the world differently, away from home stressors. Everything is adventurous and fun, and the world keeps surprising you in every mile you cover. However, accidents during a road trip can change the adventurous mood in no time. You have to make a stop and think about the accident first. The situation can be stressful. In case you get involved in an accident while road tripping, you need to do the following:
1. Exchange Information
You need to ask for the names, addresses, and driver’s license numbers of the other drivers involved. The additional information that you need from the other victims is the insurance details for their vehicles. When talking to the other drivers, try to be cooperative and cordial. Don’t apologize for the accident. You may be blaming what happened, and this may be used against you when filing a claim by the other particles. After the accident, it’s hard to determine the party at fault immediately. Therefore, be careful not to admit guilt unnecessarily before the investigation. Also, you need to avoid discussing the accident fault with the other victims. The research, according to the experts at davidblackwelllaw.com, is done based on the information you provide, with any other supportive documentation linked to the accident.
2. Stay at the Scene
Even when you still feel like you are running late for your road trip planned activities, do not leave the scene after the accident. Leaving the accident scene wipes your chances of getting compensated. You may even end up being accused as the party at fault once you choose to escape from the scene. It is also against the law to leave. The act may get deemed as a felony offense or a misdemeanor. If someone dies in the accident, and you happen to go, you can get charged as a hit-and-run driver. However, there are certain situations when you can leave the accident scene. The instances include;
- You may need to go and report the case when the accident occurs in a location far from a police station.
- Accident happening in a high-crime location. It is okay if the driver moves to a more secure place as they await the police to arrive.
- After making sure the location is safe, regain your composure and stay within the vicinity of the accident. Only leave when the authorities permit you to do so.
3. Call the Police
Any accident needs to get reported to law enforcement. The police can be an invaluable source of information and help in such a confusing circumstance. You need a police report to file a claim against the damages caused to you after the accident. If you don’t call the police and have them document the accident by gathering evidence, then it’s your word against the other driver. Sometimes police take time before coming up with the report. Under such circumstances, you should get the name, the badge number, and the police agency to get a copy of the document later after the necessary evidence is available. The other reason you need to call the police immediately after an accident is to provide the essential first aid required before calling in for medical assistance.
4. Document the Accident
Documenting details in a road trip accident helps protect yourself. Identify the other individuals involved and, if necessary, note down their names and the car registration number. Make sure you get the details of the police investigating the case too. Take pictures of the damages caused to the vehicles involved, nearby road signs, and your visible injuries. If your wounds are invisible, keep a journal on the symptoms you experience every day.
The pictures act as proof that all happened during the accident. Photos taken can strengthen your case by increasing the chances of compensation for the damages as a result of the accident. If witnesses are involved, politely ask for their names and contact information. Failure to do that immediately after the accident may result in complications, and you won’t be able to find them once you leave the scene of the accident.
5. Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you get involved in a road accident while road tripping, don’t hesitate to contact a personal injury lawyer for help. In most cases, people fail to conduct an attorney for fear of charges involved. Reputable attorneys offer free consultation services. Don’t be afraid of the thought of deducting the money you budgeted for your road trip. Mostly, personal injury attorneys receive payment after the case is solved. It is vital to discuss the accident causes and effects with a personal injury attorney who can help to protect your interests. Professionals recommend you to provide the information you gathered after the accident for evaluation of the accident claim. After, the attorney investigates the complaint to identify the possible sources of compensation, then fight for the full compensation you deserve.
6. Contact Your Insurance Company
Immediately after the accident occurs, notify your insurance agency and start the claims process. Calling the company while still on the accident scene helps give precise details required to process your claim. That way, you can focus on working with your insurance agency to repair your vehicle and get back to a healthy life as quickly as possible. You have a legal obligation to report accidents to your insurer under the terms and conditions of your car insurance policy. If you don’t talk about the accident immediately, you may get denied insurance coverage. It would be best to remember that you have to present the police report for an insurance claim to be accepted. It would help if you also got the contact of the other driver’s insurance agency. Check online for details to confirm its accuracy. You can choose to talk directly to them or have your insurance adjuster communicate with them.
Road trips aim to be fun while staying safe by avoiding injuries during the journey. The guidelines mentioned above are essential for solving accidents when on a road trip. However, it’s best to prevent the disaster from occurring by driving carefully, obeying all the road signs, and preparing for the worst by carrying the necessary tools in your vehicle. It could be a first aid kit and tools to fix car issues. You can’t afford to waste time when you should be enjoying the road trip to the fullest.