The Texas Department of Transportation reports that in 2021, there were 15,764 serious vehicle crashes on Texas roads and highways, leaving 19,488 people with serious injuries. If you regularly drive on I-35 or anywhere else in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, you are at risk of becoming an accident statistic. Your best preparation is to understand what you should do after you suffer injuries in a Fort Worth car accident:
- Exchange information with the other driver but never admit or discuss fault because it can be used against you when you file a car accident lawsuit to recover compensation for your damages.
- Talk to witnesses only to get contact information and a general idea of what they saw. Do not try to persuade them about the cause of the accident.
- Take pictures and videos of the accident scene, including interior and exterior shots of the damaged vehicles, traffic, road signs, accident debris on the road, and skid marks.
- Report the accident to your insurance company but do not make any statements to the other driver’s insurer. Instead, retain a Fort Worth car accident lawyer and refer all calls from the other party’s insurance company to your lawyer.
- Do not accept direct offers for payment or any funds from the other party or their insurance company–your acceptance of that payment might be interpreted as a full and final settlement of your car accident damages claims.
- Have a thorough medical examination within 24 hours after the accident, even if you do not believe you were injured. That examination will set a baseline for your health status immediately after the crash.
- File a report with local police authorities and request a copy of that report and any reports filed by the other party.
- Retain copies of all documents, invoices, and other evidence of the costs you incurred that are associated with the accident. This includes your paystubs to show your earnings and reductions in your salary when your injuries keep you from working.
- Record your impressions of the accident and your injuries in real-time, including your activities while recovering.
- Do not post any comments about your accident on social media or any platforms that can be accessed by the other driver or their insurance company.
The Dangers of Highway Accidents
Getting into an accident is always a nerve-wracking experience, but it may seem even more upsetting to get into an accident on a highway such as I-35. Nearby vehicles may be traveling at a fairly high speed, which could make it dangerous to try to exit your vehicle after the accident.
Steady traffic can also make it harder for other drivers to try to pull over to offer assistance, or for witnesses to attempt to stop. First responders may have a difficult time getting through traffic if an ambulance is needed, so it may take longer than usual for help to arrive.
Measures To Keep Safe
If you get into an accident on I-35, it’s important to keep yourself and your passengers safe. Try to stay as calm as possible. Do whatever you can to make yourself visible to other drivers. Start by turning on your hazard lights right away.
Pull over to the side of the road only if it’s safe to do so and be very careful before exiting your vehicle. If you carry reflective triangles or flares in your vehicle, set them out to warn others on the road that there has been a wreck.
Check for Injuries
Check on other parties that were involved in the accident to see if anyone is injured including all drivers and passengers. Call an ambulance if one is needed and do anything you can to help injured victims.
Call the police to report the accident. Once the police arrive, be sure to fully cooperate with their investigation. An accident report will be an important document when dealing with insurance companies.
What to Say and What Not to Say After the Accident
It’s not uncommon for people who are involved in accidents to be very shaken up and to blurt out the first thing that comes to mind. It’s important to be careful about what you say at the scene of an accident.
Don’t make any kind of statement that sounds like you are admitting you are at fault. At the same time, don’t get into arguments with the other driver or express feelings of anger or hostility or vocally blaming them.
You may think you will remember every detail of an accident, but it’s important to write down clear detailed information about what happened. Gather information and write it down, such as the name and insurance company of the other driver, license plate numbers and the make and model of the other car. Make note of environmental factors such as the effect weather may have had or the position of the sun.
It’s also a good idea to write down the name and badge number of the police officer who came to the scene of the accident. Using your smartphone, take pictures of damaged vehicles, skid marks and anything else you think you may need to refer to later on.
Get Legal Advice
A routine drive on I-35 can turn into a wreck when you least expect it. If you have been injured due to the negligence of another driver, talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer. Contact Patterson Law Group using the form on this page, and one of our expert attorneys will get back to you promptly.
How An Auto Accident Attorney Can Help
Even a minor car accident can be overwhelming and impact your day-to-day activities. A Fort Worth personal injury lawyer at the Patterson Law Group can ease the process of getting your life back on track by recovering the compensation you need to pay your bills and reimburse you for all your losses. With that compensation, you can better focus on your health and well-being without worrying about negotiating with insurance companies and arguing with other parties.
What to Do After a Fort Worth Car Accident
Hire a Fort Worth Car Accident Attorney Immediately After Your Accident
The sooner you hire an attorney after your car crash, the sooner they will be able to begin the process of collecting evidence and fighting for your rights. Take care of your injuries first, then call the Patterson Law Group for experienced legal representation in a Texas car accident lawsuit.