Car accidents cause injury or death to almost 2.5 million Americans every year. Traffic accidents represent the single greatest killer of Americans year after year. Not only is engaging in the standard form of American transportation dangerous and potentially fatal, these dangers are continually increasing – and at an alarming rate – in spite of the sickening price tag of research and development projects to combat this very issue of road safety. Drivers on our nation’s roadways seemingly multiply year after year and somehow continue to get worse at driving, not better.
This means that you must recommit yourself to vigilance on the road and understand the dire necessity of teaching your children the value of safe driving habits when it comes time to educate new learners in your life. But what if this isn’t enough? There were more than 37,000 traffic accidents nationwide in 2016, so it is simply impossible to assume you will never experience the headache and associated actual aches of a car accident. Estimates suggest that most Americans will experience three or four of these joyfully rage inducing phenomena in their lifetime, so if you happen to be involved in one, here are steps you should surely follow.
Assess the situation
The first thing you must consider after lifting yourself out of your vehicle is the damage done to it. Who is at fault, what proof can you muster to support your version of events (because there is sure to be an alternate theory), and has this encounter left you needing immediate medical attention? There are just a few of the immediate considerations you must make. It’s easy enough to remember to call 911, but what about a call to a lawyer? All too often, accident victims lose sight of their rights in the wake of a violent collision and end up getting raked over the coals by either their or the other driver’s insurance company.
Find a lawyer
As important as the facts of the case are, finding a lawyer that will do battle with the insurance group on the hook for your claims over those facts is equally essential. So, while you are taking pictures of the damage to your precious set of memories on wheels, make sure to phone a legal expert, as well.
While the scene of the accident is important, there is prep work that should be done to ensure a smooth experience with both law enforcement on site and anyone you will be required to talk with after the fact. Searching for a lawyer can be a tedious responsibility made difficult if not nearly impossible in the heat of the moment and with the certain presence of injury clouding your judgement. That is why you should take the time to search for legal advice beforehand. California sees more accidents every year than any other state, so the question of this issue looming large in your future is one of “when” not “if.” Searching for auto accident lawyers in Sacramento, Los Angeles, or San Diego is an easy task that can be undertaken over a cup of coffee in the morning, or during a lull in action at the office and will put you at ease when you pull your keys out to hit the road.
Practice safe driving
Following an accident, drivers may have a hard time getting back on the road. While an accident can have a lasting psychological effect, it should not cause one to fear driving or experience anxiety because of it. It can help to reinforce the positive driving habits so that you feel more confident to drive again. This includes defensive driving and constant alertness, following speed limits, and noting the changing driving conditions that may result from severe weather or from situational factors. Never drive while under the influence, and make a conscious effort to avoid partaking in any sort of road rage behavior. If your destination is over two hours away, consider taking short breaks to stretch and reenergize. Being tired is not just a danger to yourself, but to those on the road with you.
You can’t always avoid a collision, but you can pass on the extra weight of dealing with it yourself to a professional – allowing you to focus on getting better and back to normal faster.