Car accidents, whether minor or severe, are a fairly frequent occurrence, with more than 5 million accidents happening each year throughout the United States. The use of seatbelts and airbags has helped to improve safety, reducing the severity of accidents when they do happen. However, when accidents do occur, many people do not what steps to take to receive treatment for their injuries and protect their rights.
Depending on the nature of the accident, some general guidelines to follow include -
1. If the accident is minor (no injuries, no or limited damage to the vehicle), there is no need alert the authorities. Do your best to move out of the way of traffic, then exchange relevant information with the other driver, such as name, phone numbers and insurance numbers.
2. Where the accident involves more substantial damage and potential injuries, it is important to secure needed medical attention as soon as possible. Call 911 and/or the police immediately. It is against the law to flee from an accident.
3. Further, where possible, it is also important to make a note of your impressions concerning how the accident occurred. For example, it is a good idea to write down what you think happened, and how the accident was caused. Details such as weather conditions, speed you were traveling, the speed you think the other vehicle was traveling (even impressions such as slow, fast, recklessly) may be important later on. If you have a cell phone camera, taking pictures of the scene and any damage that may have occurred is a good idea as well. What you can recall at the time of the can play a crititical role later on in helping you recover damages.
4. Finally, where an injury or substantial damage has occurred, it is always important to consult with an experienced Hawaii accident attorney who can help you determine your next steps and ensure you obtain the compensation you are entitled to for your accident.
For more information, please contact the experienced Hawaii injury lawyers at Bostwick Peterson, LLP for an immediate consultation.