If you or a loved one have been involved in an automobile crash, you know the effect even after the incident. Persons do not always understand an automobile crash investigation and can be left confused and upset, especially if they are determined by the police to be responsible.
An automobile accident, also referred to as a “traffic collision,” or a “motor vehicle accident,” occurs when a motor vehicle strikes or collides with another vehicle, a stationary object, a pedestrian, or an animal. While some car accident results only in property damage, others can result in severe personal injury or even death. There can be many factors contributing to this crash an they can have legal consequences.
There are unlimited causes of crashes. Here are a few to consider: Weather, road conditions, driver inattentiveness, speeding, texting or talking on cell phones, fatigue, driving under the influence or alcohol or drugs, faulty auto parts such as brakes or tires. These are only a few examples to consider.
Drivers of motor vehicles have a duty to exercise reasonable care. This includes the duty to exercise reasonable care including maintaining a reasonable lookout and maintaining control of the vehicle. Failure to exercise this care can be negligence. Just because an accident occurs does not establish anyone has been negligent. The question of whether a driver has fulfilled the duty of reasonable care is almost always a question of fact.
Drivers can panic and not know what to do. Emotions run high especially if there is a personal injury. It is vital to know what to do and here are things to consider: Remain at the Scene, Check for injuries and call 911 for injuries, collect information from all drivers including names, addresses, phone numbers and insurance information. Take a photograph of the vehicle and license plates as well as other possible witnesses’ vehicles. Make an insurance report with your agent who will assist you on what other steps to take. Keep track of your expenses by gathering bills and repair estimates and any medical bills. You should always consider legal counsel when there are injuries or a great deal of property damage. Make sure to hire an attorney who is experienced. This is specifically important if you are facing criminal charges related to the accident.
Always consider the assistance of a private investigator to collect evidence including a review of law enforcement reports, interviewing witnesses and reevaluating the crash scene. This should be done swiftly so skid marks or other evidence still exists.
When you are involved in a motor vehicle accident or crash, always pull over if safe to do so and check if anyone is injured. Contact law enforcement to make the report and call or ask someone to contact an ambulance for injuries.
If there are no injuries, you should still notify law enforcement and make the report. If they tell you to exchange information with the other driver, do that. Make sure to collect vehicle make, model and license plate number. You should also ask the driver for his/her drivers license and proof of insurance for policy number and company name. If possible, try and remember how many people are inside the other vehicle for future reference.
It is a good idea to take a picture of the damage to both vehicles with a camera if available. Just make sure to remember your safety at the scene of any motor vehicle accident. YOU SHOULD NEVER ALLOW SMOKING NEAR AN ACCIDENT.
After an automobile accident, people can later be criminally charged with a crime due to the police determining fault and issuing a citation or complaint.
A private investigator will review all the reports, statements and drawings submitted by law enforcement. Once that is complete, the other driver or witnesses can be interviewed. This could also include other passengers in either vehicle. We will also search for any video that may exist in the area, such as businesses before it is re-recorded over. We need to find all the information to help tell the complete story. In the event there are injuries, we will also review the medical reports to look for information that doesn’t match what others have said, due to injuries.
Make sure you talk with an attorney before submitting to any discussions with anyone not representing you. It is a good idea to talk with an attorney that handles these types of cases. An attorney can assist you with your legal rights.
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