Getting into an accident involving a large commercial truck is a nightmare scenario for many drivers on the roadways in and around Philadelphia. When a traditional passenger car is involved in a collision with a large truck, the reality is that those inside the smaller vehicle often sustain severe injuries. Here, we want to discuss what you can do if you or a loved one are involved in a crash with a large commercial truck in Philadelphia.
Immediate Steps to Take
- Seek medical care. The single most important thing that any person needs to do after being involved in an accident with a large truck is to secure medical care immediately. Even if a victim does not feel much pain after a crash occurs, they need to let a doctor conduct an evaluation. This ensures the well-being of the crash victim while also establishing a direct link to the crash. The signs and symptoms of many truck crash injuries often do not appear until hours or even days after the incident occurs.
- Report the incident to the police. Someone at the scene of a truck crash must call 911 to ensure that the police are on the way to the location. Under no circumstances should a truck crash in Philadelphia go unreported. The police need to conduct a preliminary investigation and fill out an accident report.
- Think about gathering evidence. If it is safe to do so at the scene of a truck crash, and if a person does not need immediate medical care, they can begin gathering as much evidence as possible. Using a smartphone or another type of camera, a crash victim can take photographs of vehicle damage, truck identification numbers, injuries, debris, traffic and weather conditions, and more. Additionally, the names and contact information of any eyewitnesses should be written down so these individuals can be contacted later on.
Steps to Take in the Days and Weeks That Follow
A truck crash scene will be cleaned up within a few hours, but the investigation does not stop then. In the days and weeks that follow, it is crucial that all truck crash victims continue any medical treatment plans prescribed by their doctor. This includes going to all follow-up visits and any physical therapy or rehabilitation necessary. There is no way to properly value a truck accident claim until after the victim reaches maximum medical improvement.
Additionally, it is important for a crash victim to seek assistance from a skilled Philadelphia truck accident attorney who can handle every aspect of their claim. An attorney needs to be involved very early in the case so they can conduct a thorough investigation. Truck accidents involve much more investigation than a traditional vehicle accident, particularly when digging through electronic logging devices, truck company maintenance and inspection records, the truck driver’s history, and more.
An attorney will handle any communication with the other parties involved, including the truck company’s insurance carrier and/or legal team. This will include all negotiations regarding compensation amounts. It is almost a certainty that the trucking company and their insurance carrier will do what they can to limit the amount of money they pay in a settlement. A truck crash attorney will counter any lowball offers and strive to secure full compensation for their client.