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Did you know there are six million car accidents in the U.S. each year? Three million Americans are injured in car accidents every year, while two million people experience permanent injuries.


Are you one of the millions of Americans that have been hit by a car and experienced severe injuries? Or you might be looking to inform yourself of the steps to take in case you do find yourself involved in an accident.


Whatever the case may be, this guide will discuss everything you'll need to do after getting into a car accident. Keep reading to learn what steps to take in case you find yourself at the scene of an accident.



Check Yourself for Injuries

According to the National Safety Council, over five million people sustained injuries in car accidents in 2021. That's over two million more than the national yearly average.


These statistics show that there's a high chance you'll get injured in an auto accident, especially if you're hit by a car while walking. This is why it's crucial that the first thing you do after an accident is to stay calm and check whether you're injured. This would also be a good time to check whether anyone else involved in the accident has injuries.



You'll need to take a mental note of whether you see any injuries on yourself or others. If you're feeling pain, you'll want to try to pinpoint what parts of the body hurt and to what degree.


  • Check for any torn clothing. This can show that you have an injury on that part of the body.
  • Check your face, head, and body for bleeding. Bleeding is often a sign of an injury or open wound.



Seek Medical Attention if You've Been Hit by a Car

If you've been involved in a pedestrian accident, you'll most likely need emergency medical care. After confirming that you or the other people involved have injuries, you'll need to call an ambulance right away.


The World Health Organization determined that delays in providing immediate medical care to those injured in car accidents increased the severity of their injuries and the possibility of death. So getting the care you need promptly is vital.


If you're conscious and alert while receiving medical care for your injuries, take the time to explain every injury to the paramedics. Make sure you explain the kind of pain you're feeling and where it's coming from.



This is why it's important to take note of your injuries before the ambulance arrives. You'll be able to quickly give them the information they need to help you.


Even if an injury seems minor, make sure you tell the paramedics and doctors about it. Smaller things might become more complicated injuries in the days or weeks following your accident.


You should insist on thorough examination and testing because some injuries aren't always clear. Your health is the top priority after an accident, and advocating for yourself can prevent complications in your recovery.



Move to Safety if Possible

If you were struck by a car while walking or riding a bike, it might be difficult to move as a result of your injuries. If that is your situation, you should try to stay as still as possible to avoid further injury. Paramedics will help move you to safety when they arrive.


If you're driving and get into a car accident, it might be safer for you to move your car. If you're in the middle of a busy intersection, your car could cause another accident. You'll need to turn on your hazard lights and move to the side of the road.


If your car isn't drivable after the accident, you can leave it where it is and get yourself to safety. If you aren't severely injured and can walk, you'll want to move to the sidewalk instead of waiting in your car. Staying in a parked car in the middle of the road could put your life in danger after having survived an accident.



Contact the Police

Whether you've sustained injuries or not, you'll still need to contact the police after getting into a car accident. Most states legally require you to contact the police and file a report regardless of the severity of the accident.


If the other driver involved drives away, filing a police report can help you find them and seek the proper compensation for any damages. A police report is necessary for insurance purposes and when you contact a lawyer down the line.


Police officers can serve as witnesses to what occurred on the scene. When speaking to police officers, make sure you ask for their names and badge numbers for your records.


You should also ask them when and where you can get a copy of the police report. If you're contacted by the police department at a later date, you should keep a record of those conversations too. All of this information will prove useful if you pursue a legal case later on.



Exchange Information With the Driver

Once injuries have been taken care of after your motor vehicle accident, you should take the time to exchange information with the other person involved in the accident. You'll need the other driver's full legal name, phone number, home address, driver's license number, and license plate number. You'll also need to know their insurance company's name and policy number.


Collecting all this information before leaving the scene of the accident will make filing an accident claim much easier. You'll also need to give your lawyer this information, so it's important to get it as soon as you can.


If you're dealing with a hit-and-run situation, the best thing you can do is write down everything you remember as soon as possible. Partial plates are better than nothing. Make a note of the car's color and shape if you can't remember anything else about it.


If you caught a glimpse of the other driver, make a note of any physical features you can remember. Jot down skin color, hairstyle and color, and any facial features that stood out.



Documentation Is Key

It's important to keep detailed records of the accident and every related process after the accident. After collecting the other driver's information, you'll want to take note of their vehicle's make, model, and color.


You can also feel free to take photos or videos of their car. Make sure the photos include the road you're on and show the position the car was left in after the accident. Write down street names as well.


Take photos of skid marks left in the road, glass from the car's windshield, and any car parts that fell off and were left in the road.



You can take this time to talk to witnesses about their accounts of the accident. Jot down their contact information in case you need to speak to them at a later date. It's also a good idea to write a personal statement describing the accident while you remember all the details.


You should take photos of any visible injuries you have too. Photograph the injuries as they heal and add notes about the medical treatments you're receiving.


You should also keep a journal where you discuss each injury in depth. Write down the location of each injury, the size, and the severity, and describe the pain you're feeling as your injuries improve.



You'll need to ask for medical records of every hospital stay, doctor visit, lab work, and other testing. You should consider keeping a notebook with other important details about your medical care.


Make a note of dates, appointment times, locations of every medical facility, and doctor names. Write down the costs of your prescriptions and any equipment needed for your recovery. All of this information will help you calculate medical expenses and wages lost while you were going to your doctor's appointments and recovering from your injuries.



Contact Your Insurance Company

The next step you should take after being involved in a car accident is to contact your insurance company. You'll want to take this time to review your policy to better understand what it'll cover. Your adjuster will work with the other driver's insurance company to coordinate what their policy will cover and determine if you have any out-of-pocket costs.


You'll need all the information you've collected to file your claim. Your insurance company will ask you to describe the accident to the best of your ability. They'll then ask you to send over all of the documentation you have so they can investigate the accident and process your claim.



The success of your claim will depend on the type of coverage you have, the evidence provided, and who was at fault. This is why it's important not to speak to the other driver's insurance company or discuss fault with the other driver involved. Everything you say can be used against you in future legal proceedings.


The only thing you should be providing to the other driver's insurance company is your contact information, your attorney's number, and your insurance company name and policy number. If the other insurance company is offering you settlements or sending you documents to sign, you might want to consider speaking to an attorney.



Consider Hiring an Attorney

If you've suffered injuries as a pedestrian and are having trouble getting proper compensation through the insurance companies, you might want to consider pursuing a personal injury case with an attorney. A lawyer can go back to the insurance company with the documentation you provided and ask for a better settlement. They can also help you file a lawsuit in civil court if the insurance company refuses to budge on their offer.


If you were hit by a car while walking or riding a bike, you're most likely not the party at fault in the accident. The driver of the car will most likely be liable to pay for your medical expenses.



It would be easier to file a claim against the driver if they were speeding or you were hit while in a crosswalk. This shows they failed their legal obligation to be alert and follow traffic laws while driving.


Your attorney might also be able to help you file a claim against the city if the accident was a result of street design or traffic device failure. An accident caused by a broken traffic light could provide means for a negligence claim against the city responsible for maintaining those lights. An accident caused by a poorly placed crosswalk and lack of street signs can also be enough cause for a claim against the city.


Hiring a pedestrian lawyer is the best thing you can do to help you get the compensation you need after being hit by a car. Let your lawyer navigate this complicated process for you so you can focus on your recovery.



Follow These Steps After Having Been Involved in a Car Accident

Follow the steps discussed in this guide if you've been hit by a car and suffered injuries. Getting medical attention for your injuries is of utmost importance.


After receiving medical treatment, you'll need to collect the necessary documentation to file an insurance claim. You'll also want to contact an attorney to help you get the compensation you need for your medical bills and lost wages.


Armed with this information you'll know what to do in case the worst happens. Check out some of the other blogs on our site for other helpful guides on a wide range of topics.


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