Would you know what to do if you were walking across the street in Los Angeles and got hit by a car? Pedestrians and cyclists can suffer severe injuries when hit by a large, heavy object like a car or truck, so it is important to make sure you get immediate medical attention and follow these steps:
Try and Stay Calm
If you are conscious after getting struck by a vehicle, try and stay calm and not let anger take over. You want to make sure you are calm to communicate your needs better and appear more sympathetic when the police arrive.
This is not easy to do since you will be suffering from an Adrenalin rush and shear panic. If possible, do not cry, yell, or swear and try and move away from the street onto a sidewalk or driveway.
Don't Let the Driver Leave
The driver may want to leave if it appears you are not hurt. You may also think you are fine only to discover broken bones in the next few days. Even if you think your injuries are minor, the Adrenalin running through your body can disguise serious injuries. Try and stay calm and request that the driver stay while you wait for the police and medical assistance. If there are witnesses to the accident, ask them to stay as well.
Call the Police
In some cases, you are shaken by the accident and feel that you are fine, so you let the driver and leave and you choose not to call the police. This is a mistake. Remember, that you are the only one thinking about your best interests, and it can be too late if you call the police later as the crime scene has been disturbed. You need to have a police accident report filed as documentation of the accident and that will be important when contacting the driver's insurance company.
Collect the Driver's Information and Take Tons of Photos
As you wait for the police and medical assistance, get the driver's information including driver's license, insurance information, and license plate number. It is also a good time to take photos of the accident site, so take out your cell phone or, if you are too injured, as a witness to take some photos for you.
Pictures of the accident site are very important, including a photo of the vehicle and their license plate. If you are involved in a hit and run, photos with the car's license plate are vital, but try and at least remember the make and color of the car if a photo isn't possible. These pictures can be helpful for insurance claims and for your accident lawyer in identifying important traffic signs or traffic lights that can help your case.
Be Heard When the Police Arrive
Make sure the police officer hears your side and documents your statement correctly. It is important that your statement is included with the report, and it is fine to ask to review the police officer's facts after he is done taking them. It is also important to get a copy of the police report and make sure it is accurate. If it isn't, you can have your accident lawyer help to have it fixed.
Seek Immediate Medical Attention
Make sure to see a doctor the same day to ensure that you do not have more serious injuries than you may think you have. It will also help if you file a lawsuit if you see a doctor right away instead of the next day. Waiting to see a doctor can make it appear like it was an afterthought and that you weren't as injured as you are claiming.