It has become more common than not to witness a car accident when you make the decision to get behind the wheel or position yourself around other drivers. Witnessing a car accident can be any situation ranging from a parking lot fender bender, to a traffic collision on the highway. Although each situation can be handled in a similar manner, we want you to know what to do. Your primary goal should be to secure the safety of your vehicle, passengers, and yourself. The following steps are all to ensure the safety of the victims and to assist emergency and law enforcement officials.
Personal Safety First
Although the distractions can be overwhelming when witnessing a car accident, your first priority should be to ensure your own safety. Make sure you park your vehicle at a safe distance away from the accident to avoid being affected by fires, broken vehicle parts, or even an explosion (this rarely happens, but you never know!) on the road.
Call for Help
The next step to make sure everyone is cared for is to contact emergency vehicles and the police department by dialing 911. This gives them time to arrive on the scene and help others as quickly as possible.
Calmly Help the Victims out
If you feel safe enough to approach the accident and assess the situation then do so. Stay calm, call out to victims to locate them. Talk them through how to safely remove themselves from the vehicle if able. If they appear to be stuck, then try your best to calm them down and wait with them until help arrives. You could ask if they need help contacting family or friends. And if traffic needs to be controlled you could do so until police officials are on the scene.
You should stick around until the police are able to speak with you. They will need your contact information and a detailed report of what you witnessed.
Care for Yourself
It would be ideal to write down a detailed summary of what you were able to witness after leaving the scene. This will assist you in the following weeks if you are contacted to aid in someone’s case. Witnessing a car accident can be traumatizing! Make sure that you can cope with what you witnessed in a healthy way by seeking the support of friends, family, or professional help.
Know what to do! If you have any questions, call an experienced traffic accident attorney like Tad K. Morlan at 800-246-8000.