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What to Do After a Truck Accident

Posted on in Personal Injury

Chicago personal injury attorneysLarge commercial trucks can be seen driving in and out of Chicago, carrying goods from our city to distant points in the nation and back again. If you have been injured in a collision with one of those trucks, however, you should contact a personal injury lawyer at Livas Law Group, A Division of Kralovec, Jambois & Schwartz.

According to the Department of Transportation, Illinois sees over 11,000 tractor-trailer accidents in an average year. If you have been injured in such a crash, we recommend that you take the following steps to preserve your ability to collect compensation.

Call the Police

You should report the accident as soon as possible so that the police can come out to the scene. The responding officer should write a police report, which you will want a copy of for your records. This report helps lock in key details of the accident, such as the date, time, location, and involved parties.

Do not worry if the officer gives a preliminary determination of fault. The officer’s opinion is not controlling for the purposes of your claim.

Exchange Insurance and Personal Information with the Truck Driver

Make sure you get the following from the driver:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Employer information
  • Driver’s license
  • License plate number

Also get the driver’s insurance information and that of the company who owns the truck if the driver is not an owner-operator. Be sure to share your own information with the driver.

Take Pictures of Damage

You might be so badly injured in the crash that all you can do is call for an ambulance. That is okay. However, if you or someone else can move around, then use your smartphone to take pictures of damage to your vehicle and the truck.

You should also get pictures of any debris and skid marks on the road or in the grass. These are also critical pieces of information that could help reconstruct how the accident happened.

Identify Witnesses

A witness is anyone who observed the accident and could be a bystander, a passenger in your vehicle, or an occupant of a different motor vehicle. Get a name and contact information for each witness, because your attorney might want to speak with them.

Write Down What the Truck Driver Says

Following the wreck, a truck driver might divulge key information that could prove useful. For example, a driver who slurs his speech could be intoxicated. This information could be critical in showing the driver was at fault for the collision. Write down anything the driver says to you following the crash.

Be Careful of What You Say

It is also important to be careful of what you say. You should never say anything that sounds like you are taking the blame for the accident. Avoid saying, “I’m sorry!” even if you feel that way. It might sound rude, but you can show compassion in other ways. For example, there is nothing wrong with asking the driver how he or she is feeling and calling an ambulance if one is needed.

Call an Illinois Personal Injury Lawyer Today

This is a vital step. Truck accident cases are often much more complicated than car crashes are. You will need a seasoned Chicago personal injury lawyer to represent you in negotiations with the truck driver and/or the trucking company. Please call Livas Law Group, A Division of Kralovec, Jambois & Schwartz, today at 312-804-6102 to schedule your free consultation where we will review your rights to compensation.

 

Source:

http://www.idot.illinois.gov/Assets/uploads/files/Transportation-System/Resources/Safety/Crash-Reports/crash-facts/2017%20Crash%20Facts.pdf

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