What to Do After a Truck Accident?

December 29, 2023 | Jarrett Blakeley
What to Do After a Truck Accident?

Many people wonder how to pick up the pieces of their lives after seeing an 80,000-pound vehicle hurtling toward them, then they're lying in the hospital.

If someone else caused the accident, you have important legal rights. Exercising these rights can help your financial future.

While taking certain steps or pursuing legal action will never reverse your injuries or trauma, it can provide the support you need to put your life back on track.

Knowing what to do after a truck accident and seeking help from a truck accident lawyer can help you handle the situation better. Read on for some tips on what to do - and not do - after a truck crash.

Seek Medical Attention

Experience Lawyer for Truck Accident

Some people immediately know they need life-saving emergency treatment after a truck collision. They cannot move or feel excruciating pain, and emergency medical technicians might insist on ambulance transportation and trauma care.

However, seeing a doctor is important, even if you do not require an ambulance and even if you feel generally okay. Sometimes, you might not feel hurt after an accident because of the shock or adrenaline. But some injuries, like whiplash or internal organ damage, don't appear immediately. They might take hours or even days to start causing pain or problems. A medical evaluation can identify these problems so you can start treatment as soon as possible.

Injuries from truck accidents can often be more severe because trucks are so big and heavy. Even if the crash didn't seem bad, the force from a truck can cause injuries that you might overlook at first.

For example, you might have a concussion, which can affect your brain, or you might have hurt your back or neck. These kinds of injuries can worsen if you do not seek treatment right away.

Another reason to see a doctor right after a truck accident is for your medical record. When you see a doctor, they make a record of your visit. This record will list your injuries and what the doctor says about them, and it is important if you need to talk to your insurance company or decide to take legal action because of the accident.

Having a record that shows you saw a doctor right after the accident helps prove that the accident caused your injuries. You need this documentation if the insurance company or the person who caused the accident questions your injuries.

When you see the doctor, they might tell you to do certain things to get better, like taking medicine, resting, or attending more appointments for physical or occupational therapy. Always follow their advice. If you don't and decide to ask for money for your injuries later, the other side might say that you didn't do what you were supposed to do to get better.

After the accident:

  • Keep track of how you feel and what treatments you get.
  • Write down any pain or problems you have, like headaches, trouble sleeping, or dizziness.
  • Keep records of all your medical appointments, medicines, and other treatments, like physical therapy.

This information can be helpful later on. It shows how the accident affected you and can help show why you need specific treatments or compensation.

Never Ignore Your Mental Health After a Traumatic Truck Crash

After experiencing a traumatic truck crash and accompanying pain and limitations, never overlook your mental health. The impact of such an event can extend beyond physical injuries, affecting your emotional well-being.

Here's why to prioritize your mental health:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): Truck accidents can lead to PTSD, characterized by persistent distressing thoughts, nightmares, and anxiety. Seeking professional help can mitigate the long-term effects.
  • Anxiety and depression: A truck crash may trigger anxiety and depression. Ignoring these mental health challenges can hinder your overall recovery and quality of life.
  • Flashbacks and nightmares: Traumatic memories can manifest through flashbacks and nightmares, disrupting your daily life. Address these symptoms promptly for mental well-being.
  • Impact on relationships: Mental and physical health struggles can strain relationships with family and friends. Seek support and counseling to help you navigate these challenges.
  • Difficulty returning to normal activities: A truck crash can create fear and hesitancy about returning to regular activities, affecting your daily life. Mental health support aids in building resilience and confidence.
  • Coping mechanisms: Develop healthy coping mechanisms to manage stress. Professional counseling provides tools to cope with a traumatic event.
  • Long-term emotional impact: Emotional scars from a truck crash may persist long after physical injuries have healed. Regular mental health check-ins contribute to ongoing well-being.
  • Legal and insurance processes: Seeking mental health support helps you manage the complexities and stress of these processes more effectively.

Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. Whether through therapy, support groups, or medication, addressing your mental health after a traumatic truck crash is a proactive step toward healing and rebuilding your life. You can seek compensation for the emotional toll and costs of mental health treatment as part of your claim.

Be Cautious With Insurance Adjusters

After a truck accident, one of the things you might face is dealing with insurance adjusters reaching out to you.

These people work for the trucking company's insurance provider. Their job is to find out what happened and settle any claims related to the accident. While they might seem friendly and helpful, they work for the insurance company, not you.

You must be careful with insurance adjusters because what you say to them can affect your claim. They receive training to gather information that might reduce the amount their company has to pay. For example, if you say something that makes it seem like the accident was partly your fault, even if it wasn't, they might use this to lower the amount of money you can get.

If you end up talking to an insurance adjuster, keep the conversation short and simple. You can tell them general information, like your identifying information and the date of the crash. But avoid going into details about the accident or how you feel. Things like saying "I'm okay" can suggest you weren't hurt, even if you were.

Sometimes, insurance adjusters will offer you a settlement quickly after the accident. This might seem like a good thing because it immediately gets you money. But these first offers are often lower than what you might need, especially if you have injuries or a lot of damage to your car.

This is where having a lawyer can help. A lawyer can talk to the insurance adjuster for you. They know what to say and what not to say. They can also look at settlement offers and tell you if they're fair. If they're not, your lawyer can negotiate for a better one.

After a truck accident, you need time to understand how badly you're hurt and how it affects your life. If you accept a trucking accident settlement too quickly, you might miss out on getting the money you need for medical treatment or the time you have to take off work.

After being in a truck accident, seeking legal advice is often wise. Truck accidents can be more complex than other types of vehicle accidents. This complexity comes from many things, like the truck's size, the laws that trucking companies have to follow, and the serious damage these accidents often cause.

One of the main reasons to consider getting a lawyer is because they know a lot about the rules and laws that apply to truck accidents. They can thoroughly explain these laws and tell you about your rights, which helps because knowing what you can do and what you should get after an accident is hard to figure out on your own.

When a big truck is involved in an accident, it's not just about the driver. The company that owns the truck and their insurance company are part of it, too. These companies usually have a lot of accident experience and might try to settle quickly or for less money than you need.

A lawyer can speak for you and ensure you receive fair treatment. They can talk to these companies and handle all the tricky parts of the process.

In truck accidents, figuring out what happened and who is at fault can be complicated. Lawyers can look into the accident in detail. They can collect evidence, talk to people who saw the accident, and even get experts to help understand what happened. You need these details, especially if the other party questions who caused the accident.

Another big job for a lawyer is to look at how the accident has affected you and determine how much money you should get. This includes not just your medical bills but also if you lost money because you couldn't work, and even how the accident has affected your life in other ways, like the inability to do things you used to enjoy.

If your truck accident case goes to court, you need a lawyer. They will handle all the legalities, talk for you in court, and work hard to get what you deserve.

Getting a lawyer after a truck accident ensures you have someone on your side. It's about getting the right help so you can take care of yourself and not worry about all the legal or insurance problems.

Each truck accident is different, so talking to a lawyer can give you advice that fits your situation. They can guide you through this tough time and ensure you receive fair treatment.

Your Lawyer Must Preserve Evidence as Soon as Possible

Call a lawyer immediately after a truck accident to preserve the necessary evidence that trucking companies possess.

Preserving Electronic Data

Modern trucks have electronic logging devices (ELDs) that record valuable data such as speed, braking patterns, and driving hours. This electronic evidence can disappear if parties fail to preserve it promptly.

Securing Truck Maintenance Records

Maintenance records are vital in assessing whether the truck was in proper working condition at the time of the accident. Trucking companies may alter or dispose of these records, emphasizing the need for immediate legal intervention.

Black Box Data Retrieval

Trucks often have event data recorders or black boxes that store information about the vehicle's performance before, during, and after an accident. Swift legal action preserves this data so you can analyze it.

Preventing Spoliation of Evidence

Trucking companies may intentionally destroy or alter evidence to avoid liability. Legal intervention promptly after an accident prevents such actions, demanding the trucking companies preserve the integrity of the evidence for potential legal action.

Securing Surveillance Footage

Many accidents occur in areas under surveillance. Trucking companies may erase or overwrite surveillance footage if not legally compelled to preserve it. Immediate legal action ensures your lawyer can secure this evidence before someone erases it.

Calling a lawyer immediately after a truck accident empowers them to take swift action in preserving evidence crucial for establishing liability, ensuring a fair settlement, and safeguarding your rights in any potential legal proceedings. Time is of the essence, and legal involvement ensures that the trucking company does not lose, destroy, or manipulate evidence.

Never Wait to Consult a Truck Accident Attorney

Remember, every truck accident differs, and the steps you must take might vary depending on the circumstances. The key is to stay calm, get medical care, and gather as much information as possible. Reporting the accident, documenting everything, and seeking professional legal advice can protect your rights and interests.

If you have any questions or concerns, don't hesitate to contact a personal accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale near you who can provide the guidance you need.

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Jarrett Blakeley

Firm founder Jarrett Blakeley fights to get maximum compensation for all of Blakeley Law Firm’s clients. He has been practicing law since 2006 and takes great pride in representing the rights of injured individuals against the insurance companies and the law firms that represent them. He has successfully represented thousands of clients and recovered tens of millions of dollars on their behalf. Mr. Blakeley strives to give all of his clients personal attention and maximum effort and seeks to instill a firm culture that prioritizes customer service and compassion for the injured over all else. Fighting for the injured is Jarrett Blakeley’s greatest passion and he looks forward to fighting for the injured for the rest of his career.

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