Steps to Take After a Hit-and-Run Accident
Few things are more frightening, or harder to deal with, than a hit-and-run accident. Not only were you in an accident and perhaps injured, but you also may not have any idea who crashed into you. Worse yet, you may not have even seen the other vehicle, which could complicate the claim filing process. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take after a hit-and-run accident. Learn them here, and discover where you can find assistance.
Check for Signs of Injury
Your first inclination might be to try and chase down the other driver or talk to nearby witnesses to see who hit you. Unfortunately, following this instinctual desire could make serious injuries worse. Often, adrenaline masks the symptoms of pain or injury, so before you step out of your car, take a few deep breaths and assess your body. Does anything hurt? Are you bleeding? Did you hit your head during the crash? Immediately call emergency responder if you notice any pain, bleeding, or believe you may have suffered a head or neck injury.
Call the Authorities
While it is likely that a nearby witness has already called the police, you should not rely on them to do so. Instead, call them yourself. Let them know where you are, and inform them if your vehicle is blocking traffic but cannot be moved. You should also notify them if you suspect injuries but believe them to be minor. In most cases, they will go ahead and send emergency responders, just to be safe.
Talk to Witnesses and Collect Information
Once you have determined that you are not in immediate danger from any potentially serious injuries, it is safe to talk to potential witnesses of the accident. Gather as much information as you possibly can, including what they saw and their name, phone number, and address. Their testimony may be critical to your case.
Seek Further Medical Attention
Emergency responders tend to deal with serious or potentially fatal injuries. To ensure you are not at risk for insidious injuries that cannot be seen, and to establish a point of injury for other, less severe injuries, it is important to seek additional medical treatment from your doctor. This visit should be made, even if you do not believe you have suffered from anything more than bumps and bruises; internal bleeding, head injuries, and conditions like whiplash can easily be missed by an emergency responder or even you, the victim.
Contact an Experienced San Diego Car Crash Lawyer
Although you can file a personal injury claim on your own, it is highly recommended that you seek the experience and assistance of a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer. Not only does this improve your odds of receiving a fair claim for your injuries, but it could also make the difference between an award of compensation and a denial of your claim. Dedicated to your best interests, our San Diego car crash lawyers at Martinez & Schill LLP will fight for the most compensation possible. Schedule your free consultation by calling 619-512-5995 today.