Witnessing a car accident firsthand requires remaining calm, cool, and collected in the face of traumatic circumstances. Your next actions will be determined largely by the severity of the accident and the extent of the injuries, but there are some general guidelines to follow. Below are some things to remember if you have witnessed a car accident:
Do not panic. If you simply witnessed a car accident, you are not legally required to remain at the scene. It is, however, the right thing to do. In the future, the people involved may require assistance from a witness like you.
The victims may be unable to dial 911 due to their injuries. If you were the only witness in a car accident and you decide to leave, the victims could be in trouble and may not be able to ask for help. If it happens in the future and you have a minute to spare, your support could be beneficial.
If you decide to continue driving, avoid becoming an obstacle to any approaching emergency vehicles or causing a traffic jam. While it is often tempting to observe the activity of first responders on the scene, this can lead to risky distracted driving behavior. Instead, concentrate on the road ahead of you to avoid being involved in a car accident.
However, if you decide to remain at the car accident scene and offer your help to the victims, there are also guidelines for handling the situation and is needed to be kept in mind:
Drive safely until you can find a place to park and exit your vehicle. Do not cause another car accident while attempting to assist the victims of the first.
As soon as you are in a safe area, call 9-1-1 and report the accident. Provide as much detail as you can to the 911 operator.
While emergency services are on their way, you can choose to approach the car accident scene. Approach with caution, keeping an eye out for distracted drivers, and if possible, stay on the sidewalk. Because the car accident may have resulted in dangerous road debris such as broken glass, you should proceed cautiously.
Try to find out if everyone is okay right away at the scene. If it’s something you know you can handle, there’s no harm in offering a helping hand, but proceed with caution. You don’t want to be involved in a civil liability suit.
If the victims are in shock, attempt to calm them down with words. As the primary witness, you can try to figure out what happened. Request a rundown from everyone, and you should have a nice summary for authorities.
Car accidents can be just as nerve-wracking to witness as they are to be a part of. If you or a loved one have been injured due to someone’s negligence, you may contact Darfoor Law Firm to assist you in getting the compensation you are entitled to.
Call us at +1-833-327-3667 for a free consultation and case evaluation.