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Hit by a Distracted Driver? Here's What You Should Do Next

Being involved in a car accident is an incredibly frightening experience. Even relatively minor fender-benders can have lasting effects, including physical pain and emotional distress. Larger, more serious car accidents can have devastating consequences. One of the most common causes of car accidents in the United States is distracted driving. Distracted driving can refer to any instances in which the operator of a car, truck, motorcycle, or other passenger or commercial motor vehicle is not paying attention to his or her surroundings. Sometimes, such as in the case of cell phone use, this behavior is illegal. In nearly all instances, it constitutes negligence.

What to Do Right After the Accident

If you were hit by a distracted driver, you may feel uncertain as to what you can do. However, after any accident, it’s important to remember your personal safety, as well as the safety of others involved. Immediately after the accident, it’s incredibly important that you seek medical treatment. Even if you believe that you were not injured or only suffered minor injuries, it is still important that you visit a doctor as soon as you are able. Often, the initial shock of an accident can mask the true severity of your injuries. Other times, injuries may not even appear for hours, days, or even weeks after the incident. Seeking medical treatment for yourself and others involved in the accident can help stop minor injuries from developing into far more serious problems.

It is also important that you remain calm after an accident. Do not panic and don’t get angry with the other driver. Instead, calmly check yourself and any others involved for injuries. As soon as you have determined that everyone is okay, or you have called an ambulance if necessary, your next step should be to call the police. You will want to file an accident report as soon as possible.

While waiting for the police to arrive, write down the name of the other driver, as well as his or her insurance information and other pertinent information. You will also want to take pictures of the accident, including any damage to your vehicle or injuries you sustained during the crash. Never admit fault or discuss liability, even when you know that the other driver’s negligence caused the accident. Wait to speak to a lawyer about the incident, instead.

Once you are able, contact your own insurance company and notify them of the accident. This should be done promptly, as unnecessary delays can result in having your claim denied.

Protect Your Legal Rights

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, you’ll want to make sure that you protect your legal rights. Car accidents can result in serious, long-lasting, life-altering injuries and emotional distress. You might end up facing mounting medical bills from costly treatment, lost wages from time taken off work after the accident, mental anguish, physical pain, and more.

When a distracted driver causes an accident that leaves you suffering, you shouldn’t have to manage the additional financial burden of all these things as well. Instead, speak with an experienced Edmond car accident attorney who can help you weigh your options and devise a plan of legal action. You’ll want to trust your case to a firm that offers personalized legal services, as every case is different and therefore requires a unique approach.

Were you hit by a distracted driver? Call Maples, Nix & Diesselhorst at (405) 241-5155 today for a free, no-obligation consultation!