In New York City, there are a lot of commercial vehicles on the road. From delivery trucks to large big-rigs, and everything in between, these large vehicles are often essential to the business-consumer relationship, but if they are not operated correctly or negligence comes into play, serious crashes can occur. Because of the size of many commercial vehicles (semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, etc.), a collision can cause catastrophic injuries to all parties involved. This is why it is important to make sure proper safety precautions are taken and commercial vehicle drivers take the steps necessary to protect themselves and others on the road.
If you have been involved in a crash with a commercial vehicle, understanding what you need to do after can be confusing. It’s normal to be concerned about your own well-being. After all, your health and best interests should be at the top of your list of priorities. However, you should take the time to recognize your legal rights so you can take action to seek compensation and hold the negligent party accountable for their reckless acts. At The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C., our New York City auto accident attorneys want to help you pursue legal action. Because of this, we’ve provided the steps you should take after an accident with a commercial vehicle.
- Gather information: Keep in mind, if you are severely injured, these steps may be difficult to do on your own. However, if you can, make sure to gather the other driver’s information. This includes his or her driver’s license, the number of the vehicle they were driving, license plate number, insurance policies, and the company for which the driver works. These can all be used to help you negotiate your case.
- Call the proper authorities: By requesting assistance from police or medical professionals, you are giving yourself additional evidence that can be added to your case. Police officers come to the scene of an accident can document the details as told by both parties and any witnesses. Medical professionals can check you for any injuries and what they discover can be added to a medical record.
- Speak with witnesses: If there is someone around — and let’s face it, New York City has plenty of pedestrians — that may have witnessed the crash, ask for their information. The insurance company can reach out to these witnesses to determine fault in the matter. They can help detail the accident based on what they saw and insurance companies can often put the accurate details together.
- Take pictures of your vehicle and any injuries: Photographic evidence can be absolutely crucial to your case. You can document your injuries — if any are visible right away — as well as where the damages on your vehicle are. In some situations, the claims adjuster for the insurance company can often determine fault based on the location of the vehicle damage and some details.
- Seek medical attention: Even if you don’t feel pain right away, know that some injuries may not manifest until hours — sometimes even days — later. By seeking medical attention, you will not only receive the treatment you need, but you will also be able to have medical records for your case. This is beneficial in many ways as proving fault in a collision often requires you to show that the other party acted negligently, the negligence led to the crash, and the crash was the direct cause of the injury.
Collision cases involving commercial vehicles can be difficult because they involve numerous parties who may be held accountable. For instance, a negligent driver can be at fault if they are drinking, distracted, using their cell phone, or driving fatigued. If the driver was told by the owner of the company to either go faster to meet a deadline, they can be found responsible for the crash. A manufacturer of a car part can also be negligent, such as in matters of brake failure.
Understanding your rights is important and taking legal action should be something you consider after a crash. You can seek compensation to help you cover expenses related to your medical bills, rehabilitation, property damage, lost wages, and more. If you or someone you love has sustained a serious injury as a result of a crash with a commercial vehicle, call our New York City auto collision lawyers at The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C. We are ready to help you move forward and seek the most favorable outcome possible in your case.