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What to Do After a Car Accident - A Step-by-Step Guide

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Traffic collisions produce a tremendous amount of force. To determine how much force, all you have to do is multiply the weight of a passenger by the speed of the vehicle. For example, a motorist weighing 175 lbs and traveling at 30 mph at the time of impact could hit the steering wheel, dash, or another passenger with over 5,000 lbs of force—and that’s at low speed. 

With energy like that at work, disorientation and catastrophic injury are highly likely. In the aftermath of a car accident, truck accident, or motorcycle wreck, knowing what to do next can come down to instinct more than anything else. 

To protect yourself and your passengers, follow these next steps, and don’t be afraid to contact a car accident lawyer ASAP once you’re safe.

Next Steps After a Traffic Collision in Birmingham, AL - A Low Cost Lawyer Guide 

At Low Cost Lawyer, our industry-low 30% fee leaves more for you to recover, heal, and thrive! Give us a call at 855-595-8889.

 Step 1 - Check for Injuries

Your safety comes before anything else. Immediately after the collision, and only if you’re able, check on yourself and your passengers. 

After a motorcycle accident, riders frequently lose consciousness. Once they wake up, however, they should move on to step 2 and contact the authorities immediately. Similarly, in truck accidents, when going against 80,000 lbs of fast-moving metal, catastrophic injury is likely. Check on yourself or your passengers if you’re able, but otherwise, you may need help from trained, emergency responders.

Step 2 - Contact Authorities & EMS

Once you’ve checked on yourself and your passengers, it’s time to call 911. You may not feel injured yet, but asking for EMS (emergency medical services) is generally a good idea. If your vehicle has come to a stop in a dangerous position, but is still driveable, consider moving to a shoulder or median for your safety. This is an optional step, however, and can be dangerous in its own right. 

If you’re safe where you are and you’ve already contacted the authorities, you may be putting yourself at additional risk by moving your vehicle. Assess the situation as best you can before moving on to step 3.

Step 3 - Document the Damage

As your nerves settle and you wait for first responders, you may have the time and ability to document the damage to your vehicle. Every picture, second of video, and crash scene image helps. Start with your vehicle first, capturing photos or video from the front, back, and sides. 

Next, consider documenting the scene—the relative position of vehicles on the roadway, nearby businesses, mile markers, and traffic signs. If you can, snap a picture of any tire marks or skid marks, but don’t put yourself at unnecessary risk. 

If other motorists pull over to help or check on you, try to get their contact information. Witness testimony could prove valuable later on.

Step 4 - Exchange Information

Next, you’ll have to exchange information with the other parties involved in the collision. Without admitting fault or discussing the circumstances, you’ll want to provide and receive the following bits of info:

  • Full legal name
  • Contact information
  • Insurance company (provider)
  • Insurance policy number
  • Driver’s license number
  • License plate number

In certain cases, you might also seek the names of passengers and their contact information. When possible, VIN (vehicle identification numbers) are also helpful. VINs can be found on the inside of the driver’s door, printed as a 17-digit number on a sticker—either on the door itself or elsewhere along the jamb.

Step 5 - Contact a Personal Injury Attorney

After a car accident, truck accident, or motorcycle accident, survivors often feel a profound sense of gratitude. But when negligence causes catastrophic injury, or even death, we want someone to be held accountable, especially as medical bills grow and our finances dwindle as a result of missing work. This is where a car accident attorney comes in.

Speed is of the essence in every traffic collision. The wreck itself may only take a fraction of a second, leaving little in the way of physical evidence or eyewitness accounts. To give you and your family the strongest chance at justice, we need to move quickly.

At Low Cost Lawyer, we’ve spent the last 30 years fighting for our clients, both in and out of courts. As experienced car accident lawyers, semi-truck accident lawyers, and motorcycle accident lawyers, we know what it takes to put the strongest case forward on your behalf.

How We Seek Justice for Traffic Collisions

When you call us to investigate your car wreck, we immediately launch into action. We start by securing evidence, including dashcams, nearby surveillance video, and car computer data before it’s overwritten or disappears.

We do the same for semi-truck accidents, especially when large trucking companies are concerned. We know how to secure valuable truck data before it’s overwritten, including average speed, speed at impact, hard braking events, and even tire pressure. 

For motorcyclists, we take a slightly different approach. Because bikers so often lose consciousness when they’re run off the road or hit by another driver, physical evidence, surveillance video, and eyewitness accounts are even more important. To give you the best fighting chance, we visit the scene of the wreck straight away. We interview nearby businesses and search for witnesses to make your case that much stronger.

Get Justice & Recover Faster after Car Accidents in Birmingham, AL

Traffic collisions are stressful, frightening, and difficult to cope with—especially in the crucial moments that follow any wreck. But knowing what to do, what to say, and what not to say in the moments immediately following a collision can leave you in a better position when proving negligence and seeking justice later on.

To speak with a personal injury lawyer about your case today, call Low Cost Lawyer in Birmingham, AL at 855-595-8889 or contact us online. Our industry-low 30% contingency fee leaves more for you and your family to recover with. Call us today!

Get the Justice You Deserve after Car Accidents, Semi-Truck Accidents, & Motorcycle Accidents Today!

Recovering from chronic injuries, catastrophic injuries, or even the death of a loved one can be emotionally and financially draining. Our roads are dangerous enough with drunk, distracted, or otherwise negligent drivers causing grievous harm to everyday motorists. To get help with your medical bills, mechanical repair bills, or even funeral expenses, let a Low Cost Lawyer seek justice on your behalf. Call us today to discuss your case at 855-595-8889 or contact us online. 

Our Birmingham Personal Injury Lawyers are Here to Help!

Timing is crucial. Let us get to work on your case as soon as possible.

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