What to do After an Auto Accident in Tennessee
There were more than 12,250 motor vehicle accidents in Knox County in 2010, according to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security. Do you know what to do after an accident in Tennessee?
Car collisions can be nerve-wracking for all parties involved; knowing what steps to take after a wreck can reduce your stress level. Follow the steps listed below once you have been involved in an accident and keep our tips in mind when you're dealing with post-crash problems.
Steps to Take Following an Accident
Even the most level-headed individuals can become overwhelmed and scatterbrained following a collision. To make sure you protect your rights and get the care needed, follow these steps:
1. Report the accident to the authorities: for vehicle accidents, contact the local police or the TN Highway Patrol; if on the water, the TN Wildlife Resources Agency; if the accident occurred on-the-job, contact your supervisor.
2. Seek immediate medical attention: if anyone has been injured, call 911 or make arrangements to get to a medical facility. Health comes first - there is no reason good enough to forego medical treatment. Many injuries will not show immediate symptoms.
3. Be honest about your health history: cooperate with healthcare staff and answer all questions honestly and completely; any attempt to conceal health issues may be misconstrued in a legal battle.
4. Preserve the accident scene: it's important to preserve the scene of the accident as much as possible. It may be necessary to alter the scene to help an injured person, remove hazards or avoid further accident; if so, alter as little as possible.
5. Document the crash: take pictures or video of the accident scene, including all vehicles involved, any hazards that were present and any other important evidence.
6. Limit discussions: only speak to the investigating officers, healthcare staff, your insurance company and lawyer. Do not post anything on social media sites and never give a statement to the insurer of the at-fault party. Direct any inquiries to your lawyer.
7. Exchange information: get the driver's license and insurance information of other involved parties.
8. Get witness information: record the names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses, including passengers. Record any statements made by witnesses about the accident, including when the statement was made and the substance of what was said.
9. Measure as needed: measure or step-off important distances, such as hazards, skid marks or other evidence.
10. Cooperate with authorities: answer any questions posed by law enforcement, and be sure to detail any suspected injuries to the officer(s).
11. Document injuries: if you or one of your passengers has been injured, take pictures of the trauma immediately and continue to document your injuries through images and written logs. Many injuries can heal quickly, so it is important to take this step when the damage is still apparent.
12. Document vehicle damage: take pictures of the damage that has been done to your property. Do not attempt any repairs until the insurer and your lawyer have given the go-ahead.
13. Don't sign or fill anything out without your lawyer's consent.
14. Contact a lawyer: you can contact a personal injury lawyer from Greg Coleman Law at (865) 247-0080 or by filling out the form on this page. Your initial call or visit is always 100% FREE, confidential and there is no obligation to you. Our firm also works on a contingency-fee basis, which means there is no cost unless we win.
Oftentimes, drivers may become frazzled and confused or forget what to do after a crash has taken place. These tips can help you stay smart post-accident.
- Always remain calm, even if you are upset.
- Check your car for the scent of gas or oil. If you do smell gas or oil, move as far away from the vehicle as possible.
- Turn on your cars hazard lights. If you have cones or flares, use them for safety.
- No matter how small the accident is, call the police to file a report.
- Record as much information about the crash that you can remember (weather conditions, driving speeds).
- Do not admit fault- even if you think it is your fault. Let the experts determine who was responsible for the accident.
- Get a copy of the police report so you can send it to your insurer.
- Call your insurance provider as soon as possible.
Contact a Knoxville Car Accident Lawyer
If you or a family member has suffered an injury in a car crash, you may be eligible for compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, property damage and emotional trauma.
Contact the Knoxville car accident lawyers at Greg Coleman Law now to explore your legal options. We have the experience and knowledge to successfully litigate car, truck and motorcycle accidents, and we start working for you immediately. We dedicate our personal attention and vast legal resources to each of our clients, and will passionately fight for your rights should you have a case.
We are proud to serve our neighbors here in Knox County. If you have been involved in an accident in the Knoxville area, contact our attorneys today.
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