After a loved one has been seriously injured in a truck accident, you—as their caretaker—may be overwhelmed and confused as to what steps you should take next. At Shannon Law Group, P.C., we understand your situation, so we have compiled this guide to help you navigate through this difficult time. We want to secure the best outcome for your loved one following a truck accident, including their financial and emotional wellbeing.
We also want to let you know that you are not alone. In 2015, approximately “858 traffic crashes occurred per day” on Illinois roadways.1 Some of these crashes involved large trucks, which accounted for “3.8 percent of overall crashes, 8.8 percent of fatal crashes, and 2.9 percent of injury crashes.”1
Truck crashes are different from other accidents because they involve a third party: a trucking company. Therefore, it is important to follow these 5 steps to ensure your loved one will get the compensation they deserve after a truck accident in Illinois.
1. If you were at the scene of the crash, take care of everyone’s safety first.
- Following a truck crash, you must stay as close to the scene as possible. Illinois law states that “[t]he driver of any vehicle involved in a motor vehicle accident resulting in personal injury to or death of any person shall immediately stop such vehicle at the scene of such accident.”2 You also should also move your vehicle to avoid “obstructing traffic more than is necessary.”2
- Call 9-1-1 immediately to report the crash, if possible. First responders will arrive as soon as possible to help those who are injured. Police officers are also dispatched to document the scene of the crash and take testimonies from eyewitnesses and parties involved in the accident.
- Move to safety and assess injuries. While waiting for first responders to arrive, move to safe area and avoid oncoming traffic. If you can, “assist anyone who is injured and needs help.”3 Cover the injured person with a blanket or coat “to help prevent shock if they are hurt badly,” but never move them.3
2. Have your loved one examined by a medical professional.
After a truck crash, some people are in shock. They should seek medical attention to rule out any serious injury.
3. Gather information on other drivers and witnesses.
If you were at the scene of the crash, you should get contact information from all parties involved on your loved one’s behalf. If you were not at the scene of the crash, you may have to contact the authorities to get everyone’s contact information, as well as the police report.
At the end of the day, you should have the following information about each person involved in the crash:
- Insurance information
- Driver’s license number
- License plate number
- Vehicle description3
- Truck driver only: Place of employment
From each witness, you should have the following contact information:
- Phone numbers
4. Take photos and video recordings of the crash scene, if possible.
You should take several photos and video recordings of the crash scene and cars involved within 24-48 hours. Don’t forget to take photos of skid marks and other signs of damage in the surrounding environment.
Keep these photos and videos in your records, along with other important documents, such as their medical records.
5. Contact an experienced truck accident lawyer before speaking to insurance companies.
Avoid speaking with any insurance company until you have consulted with an experienced truck accident attorney who can represent your loved one’s case. At Shannon Law Group, P.C., our attorneys understand how stressful your life can be following a truck accident injury.
We not only guarantee the best outcome for your case, but we’ll also make you and you loved one’s lives as easy as possible. Please call us at (312) 578-9501 or toll-free at (866) 881-9980. You can fill out our online contact form, too. A free, no-obligation consultation is available as well.