Q What should I do if I have been in a truck accident?
Accidents with large trucks can be devastating. There is crucial information you should obtain and tasks you should do if you are in a truck accident.
At the scene:
1. Get correct contact information (names, addresses, phone numbers) of everyone involved, including other drivers and passengers in other cars and the driver of the truck.
2. Get insurance information of the other drivers involved, including the truck driver and the owner of the truck (which is often not the truck driver).
3. Somebody probably saw and heard the collision happen. Get names, addresses and phone numbers of all the witnesses.
4. Get names of the police officers at the scene, including whether they are local, state or federal officers. (Since many accidents with large trucks are on federal highways, there may be more than one kind of officer that responds to the scene.)
5. Be sure you get accurate information about the location of the accident. Interstate highways have mile markers that help officers and others figure out locations. Since accidents on Interstate highways often happen miles from a town or city, be sure to know the mile marker where the crash occurred.
6. Note injuries to all drivers and passengers and take pictures if you can.
7. Note all damage to the cars and trucks and take pictures if you have a camera.
Within a day or so:
1. Inform your insurance company.
2. If not already done, file a police report about any injuries or extensive vehicle damage.
3. Find out if a report needs to be filed with the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
Within a few days or sooner if serious injuries or death occurred:
Contact a lawyer experienced in handling large truck accidents.