The Best Way to Deal with a Drunk Driver at the Scene of Your Accident
Getting into an accident with another driver is bad enough, but what if you get into an accident with a drunk driver? The injuries could be worse on both sides, and it's a more dangerous accident to have given that the inebriated driver is so unpredictable. Here are some tips on how to deal with an accident like this.
1. Your health and safety come first after a DUI accident.
Your health and safety will always come first after an accident of this nature. Your first instinct may be to make sure everyone is okay. You may also have the urge to check if they need medical assistance before the paramedics arrive, or even perform CPR. That being the case, those who are drunk may not realize they are even injured.
They may not even know they were in an accident at first until they see their car or see you walking toward them. If this is the case, explain what happened calmly. If they need help but they become violent, you need to back away from them. It is a good idea to retreat to your vehicle until the danger passes.
Do not wait for the drunk driver to agree to calling for medical assistance – just do it. You may have injuries yourself and need medical attention. You should look out for yourself first, especially when the other driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
2. Inform first responders and avoid admitting fault for the accident.
The next thing you should do after the accident is to call for first responders. This includes paramedics, fire fighters, and police officers. There may be a threat of a vehicle catching on fire or even multiple cars being involved in the accident.
Make sure you move to the side of the road if your vehicle is still running. If your vehicle does not run after the accident, you should get out of the car if it is safe to do so. If it is not safe to move at all, let the dispatchers know when calling for assistance.
The more information first responders have about your accident, the more prepared they will be to help you and the other driver. You should not admit fault at any point in this step or the police officers may put it in their notes. The insurance company will bring this up as a reason for denying your claim.
3. Collect evidence of the car accident if it's safe to do so.
While waiting for the first responders to show up on the scene, gather as much evidence as you can. Do not gather any evidence if it is not safe to do so after the accident. It is okay to let the police gather the evidence you need for a claim. This will be especially true if you are in the middle of traffic and are unable to move your vehicle to a safer position.
Your lawyer will also know what evidence to look for when going through the claims process. When going to a medical facility for treatment of your injuries, get any paperwork you can from the doctor. This paperwork will also help your lawyer as they go through the process.
4. Call an experienced lawyer before you file any claims.
The fourth thing you should do after getting treated for the accident is call a lawyer. You will have evidence at this point, which you should bring with you to the consultation. The lawyer you hire will be able to tell you whether or not you have a case for personal injury against the other driver or your insurance carrier. Tell your lawyer everything you know and bring a signed paper that gives your side of the story for their files. Once you have the evidence your lawyer needs, you'll have a successful case.
For immediate legal help, contact us at Ricci Law Firm, P.A. Our Greenville car accident attorneys are available to help, and consultations are FREE until we win your case. We can be reached at (252) 285-4081.