What to Do If You’re Hit by a Commercial Truck or Big Rig
Being involved in an accident with a commercial truck or big rig in West Virginia can be a traumatic and life-changing event. The size and weight of these vehicles can cause catastrophic injuries and even death.
If you or a loved one have been in such an accident, it’s important to act immediately to protect your rights and seek compensation for your losses. We’ll provide you with the steps you should take if you’re hit by a commercial truck or big rig in West Virginia.
Contact a West Virginia truck accident lawyer today for help navigating your personal injury case.
Step 1: Seek Medical Attention Immediately
Seeking medical attention immediately following a commercial truck or big rig accident is critical not only for your health but also for your legal case. Your medical records will be important evidence in seeking compensation later.
Even if you don’t feel injured, it’s still important to get checked out by a medical professional to ensure there are no hidden injuries.
Step 2: Call Law Enforcement and Report the Accident
Calling law enforcement and reporting the commercial truck or big rig accident is always important. It establishes an official record of the accident and helps determine who was at fault.
Additionally, the police report will contain valuable information to aid the investigation and strengthen your personal injury case. Always cooperate with law enforcement and provide them with any information they need.
You should also contact the West Virginia Public Service Commission—or request the responding officer do so—in order to have someone come to the scene to inspect the semi. This inspection will assist in determining what might have caused the accident.
Step 3: Collect Information and Evidence at the Scene
After every traffic accident, fault is established. And for fault to be established, evidence needs to be presented. Collecting information and evidence at the scene of the accident can be crucial in building a strong case for your truck accident claim.
The types of information and evidence you’ll need to collect include:
- Contact information of any witnesses and the truck driver
- Photos of the scene and any damages to the vehicles or surrounding area
- A photo of the Department of Transportation number, which should be conspicuously posted on the truck
- A copy of the police report
It’s important to document as much information as possible to strengthen your case and increase your chances of receiving fair compensation for your injuries and damages.
Step 4: Contact a Truck Accident Attorney in West Virginia
An experienced attorney can help you navigate the complex legal process, gather evidence, and negotiate with insurance companies to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
Additionally, an attorney can help you understand your rights and the legal options available to you, which can be critical in making informed decisions about your case. By working with an attorney, you can focus on your recovery while your legal team handles the details of your case.
Step 5: Do Not Speak to Insurance Companies Without Legal Representation
After a car accident, it’s common for insurance companies to reach out to you for a recorded statement. However, it’s important to remember that the insurance adjuster’s main goal is to protect their company’s interests and minimize liability.
Speaking to insurance companies without legal representation could potentially harm your case and result in lower compensation. A skilled personal injury attorney can help protect your rights and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf to ensure you receive fair compensation for your damages and injuries.
Step 6: Preserve Evidence and Document Your Injuries
After a large truck accident, preserving your collected evidence is crucial. You should also document any information about your injuries and organize your paperwork. This will aid in building a strong personal injury case against the truck driver’s insurance company, the trucking company, or any other liable party.
Aside from taking photos of the accident scene, getting witness statements, and getting the police report, there are a few other things you need to do to prove your case.
Keeping records of medical bills, treatment plans, and any ongoing symptoms is important. By documenting the extent of injuries and their impact on daily life, you can ensure you receive proper compensation.
This is particularly true in cases where catastrophic injuries have resulted from the crash. Non-economic damages like pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of earning capabilities are common in these cases, and medical evidence will be crucial.
Failing to document injuries or waiting too long to seek medical attention can weaken a case and make it difficult to prove the extent of damages caused by the accident.
Contact an Experienced West Virginia Truck Accident Lawyer Today
Being in an accident with a commercial truck can be a scary and traumatic experience.
However, it’s important to take immediate action to protect yourself and your legal rights. With the right support from an experienced personal injury attorney, you can navigate this difficult situation and get the compensation you deserve.
If you need help with your truck accident case, contact the team at Miley Legal today for a free case review.