You check the cross-walk before crossing it in your vehicle, though you don’t see the person who just walked out into it. You hit the person and you can feel the impact of your car hitting them as if you were shot by a gun. You cringe as you slam on the brakes, not realizing how much damage you could have caused your vehicle.
You have never hit a pedestrian before and you have no idea what you should do first. Your mind is a whirlwind of emotions and your heart is pounding in your chest. Let’s take a closer look at what you should do after getting into a wreck with a pedestrian.
1. Take a deep breath.
The first thing you should always do is take a deep breath. You want to clam yourself down so that you are thinking clearly. You want to calm yourself down so that you are not shaking, especially when the police officer comes to ask for your story about what happened.
You want to appear calm, cool, and collected even if you’re not. The last thing you’d want to do after a wreck is make irrational decisions that could cause even more damage to an already-delicate situation.
2. Assess the situation now before you.
The next thing you want to do is assess the situation. You want to do this with a clear head so you can make better decisions about what to do. You want to make sure you are not panicking when you make these decisions so that you don’t end up making the situation worse.
Take a look at the scene before you and take note of anyone standing around. These people could very easily become witnesses to what happened; make sure they stay around if they did see something. You want to make sure that they talk to the police, even if their testimony doesn’t help you.
3. Call 9-1-1 for medical help if anyone is injured.
The third thing you want to do is to call 9-1-1 for anyone injured, whether it was you or the pedestrian crossing the road. You might also want to take note of what the operator on the other end of the line says.
He or she could help you calm down if you are still panicking internally over what just happened. It would be a good idea to not admit fault to what happened, no matter whose fault it was in the first place. The police officer would take note of your words in the police incident report.
4. Clear the roadway if at all possible.
If it is possible, please clear the roadway of both your vehicle and the pedestrian. If the pedestrian can walk, have them walk to a sidewalk or to the side of the road. If they cannot walk, have them wait where they are for medical attention.
The last thing you’d want to do is worsen any injuries they have by having them walk anywhere. Make sure to take note of your surroundings during this step so you can recall it for the insurance person who calls you about the wreck. Remember anything you can or even take photos of what you’re seeing.
5. Take photos of any and all damage along with the surrounding area.
Make sure to take photos of anything you see, including damage to your vehicle. Also take photos of the pedestrian if you have their permission to do so. Do not take photos of them without their express permission to do so. You don’t want a lawsuit because of this on your hands on top of the wreck that just happened.
Also take photos of the surrounding area, such as other vehicles or damage to other structures. Also talk to any witnesses you find about what they saw; ask them to stay so they can talk to the police who will be arriving soon.
6. Call a qualified attorney to help!
Greenville, NC Bicycle and Pedestrian Accident Attorneys
I’m Brian Ricci, a Bicycle and Pedestrian Accident Lawyer serving Greenville, NC and the surrounding areas. If you have suffered a personal injury, please call me anytime at (252) 777-2222 or 800-387-6406 for free, friendly advice.
I am a longtime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.
Founder of the leading personal injury website: www.riccilawnc.com/Personal-Injury-Lawyer.