What to do if you’ve been struck by a car
With more drivers on the roads than ever before, many of whom are inattentive at the wheel, it’s little wonder that serious accidents are as common as they are. In 2016, nearly 37,500 people were killed in automotive crashes in the U.S., according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That’s an increase of 5.6 percent from 2015.
“Pedestrian fatalities rose to their highest point since 1990 last year.”
Fatal accident types are up almost across the board, for incidents that include speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol and failure to buckle up. But logging the biggest increase last year were deadly crashes affecting pedestrians. Indeed, a 26-year high of 5,987 people out walking, jogging or running were struck and killed in 2016 – a 9 percent year-over-year surge, according to NHTSA data.
Fortunately, many of those who are struck on the side of the road – or hit while crossing the street – survive. However, the impact can be truly devastating, resulting in broken bones, bruising, concussion symptoms, nerve damage, not to mention the traumatic toll it can take on one’s mental and psychological well-being. And while no one expects this type of thing will happen to them, it’s important to know what to do in the immediate aftermath. Here are a few tips to be mindful of if you or a loved one is injured in a pedestrian-related car crash:
Get out of harm’s way
Being hit by a car can be as minor as a few scrapes and scratches to as serious as traumatic brain injury and torn ligaments. Assuming it’s the former, your first line of defense should be to move away from oncoming traffic so you can gather your thoughts and take an assessment of what just happened. If your injuries are serious, still try to get to someplace safe if you can.
Contact the authorities
Once you’ve had a few minutes to calm down, the local police department will need to be notified about the incident. Dialing 911 should transfer you to the proper department where you can explain to the dispatcher where the event took place – specifically on what street, along with any other identifying information you can recall – and how you’re doing physically. The responder will also want to know the extent of your injuries, so try to be as detailed and specific as possible so medical resources can get to you as quickly as possible.
Exchange information with driver
Of course, hit-and-run incidents are against the law, so the driver involved in the crash should be at least one of the people who will pull over right away. At this point, your adrenaline may still be in overload, especially if the motorist was driving in a reckless manner. However, it’s important to remain as calm, cool and collected as possible so information can be exchanged. Make sure to get the person’s name, cell phone number, mailing address, license plate number, as well as the signature characteristics of his or her vehicle, namely the make and model. Also take note of the car’s color and the company that insures the automobile. Try to snap a few pictures, too, as they can help with the ensuing investigation and insurance claim process.
Whether at intersections or on back roads, pedestrian accidents happen every day.
Speak to witnesses
If other drivers pull over, you may want to talk to them as well, as they can provide corroboration for how the incident took place from their vantage point. This can also be very helpful to your case if there’s a dispute about who is to blame.
Seek out medical attention
Car accident injuries don’t always present themselves right away, so even if you feel like you’re fine, see your primary care physician who can give you a physical assessment to ensure nothing is damaged. You may also want to speak to a chiropractor who may be able to detect if you’ve pulled a muscle or pinched a nerve.
Performing your due diligence to ensure you’re alright can itself be extremely expensive. In short, you may be entitled to compensation. Glofin specializes in cash advances so you can pay for the costs associated with discovery and hiring an accident attorney. Qualification is fast and fees are affordable.