An accident of any kind can be terrifying, but especially so when an 18-wheeler truck is involved. These types of accidents are often devastating due to the size of the truck, and in some cases the weight of its cargo. If you or someone you love is ever hit by an 18-wheeler, it’s important to know what to do after.
What to Do Immediately after the Accident
Having guidance after an 18-wheeler accident is not only best for your health, but will also help you obtain the best results for your accident claim.
Self-Check and Call 9-1-1
The highest priority is your wellbeing. Ensure you are not in any immediate danger, then call 9-1-1 and stay in your vehicle until emergency responders arrive. If you are in a dangerous situation, try to move to the side of the road. Check on your passengers and if they are injured, try not to move them and wait for first responders.
Exchange Driver Information
Get the most information you can about the truck driver and the company they work for, including:
- Name, address, and phone number for the people involved in the accident
- Insurance information and policy number
- Vehicle registration card
- Name, address, and phone number of the company the trucker works for.
- 18-wheeler year, make, model, color, and license plate number
- VIN number of the vehicle. It’s usually on the lower left front windshield and/or on the inside of the driver’s door.
If you are immediately transported to the hospital, the police officers who arrive on the scene will file an accident report that should contain the above listed information in it.
Document the Scene
Write down the exact location of the accident, street names, and address, as well as the contact information for any witnesses. If you are physically able to, take photographs of:
- The accident scene and surrounding area from every direction and angle
- Any skid marks on the road
- Each vehicle involved in the crash and its damage
- The trucker’s drivers license ID
- Your injuries.
If you have a dashcam, make sure to save any video footage. All of this information can eventually be used as evidence when it comes time to prove liability and obtain compensation.
Contact an 18-Wheeler Truck Accident Attorney
Take advantage of a free consultation with an experienced 18-wheeler truck accident lawyer in Houston. They will walk you through the next steps and advise you on what you need to do to obtain the compensation you will need for medical bills, to fix your vehicle, to cover lost income, and for any other accident-related expenses.
Why 18-Wheeler Truck Accidents Often Happen in Texas
The most common illegal actions that result in 18-wheeler accidents are:
- Distracted Driving: often due to talking on a cellphone, texting, eating and drinking, watching TV, or surfing the Internet.
- Violating hours of service requirements: if a trucker spends too many hours on the road, he may become drowsy, inattentive, or even fall asleep behind the wheel.
- Reckless driving: some truck drivers use drugs or alcohol while on the road, which can result in aggressive or unsafe driving maneuvers, or traveling over the speed limit.
- Improper maintenance: truckers must ensure that all parts of their vehicles, trailers, and cargo are in proper working order before beginning a journey. Overloading the trailer, improper fasteners, thinning tires, broken mirrors, and other maintenance problems can all lead to an accident.
- Poorly trained drivers or lack of experience. Trucking companies may engage in negligent hiring practices to get truck drivers on the road. For example, failing to perform background checks, drug testing, and adequate driver training.
Speak to an Experienced Houston 18-Wheeler Truck Accident Lawyer
If you or a loved one is hit by an 18-wheeler truck in Texas, you may be entitled to legal compensation. Contact Milano Legal Group so we can help you get your life back together. Call (713) 489-4270 or message us online to schedule a free consultation today.