Five Things You Need To Do After a Defective Automobile Crash
Very much like the old saying, “defense is the best offense,” being prepared for a crash – knowing what you have to do in those crucial moments and days that follow – is of paramount importance.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a car crash you believe was the result of a defective product, the steps you take following the accident are especially crucial.
Whether you were injured in a car crash you believe was caused by a defective tire or a defective ignition switch, there are a few steps you can take to ensure you preserve witnesses and evidence for your case.
- Call 911 – It seems like a no-brainer, but the moments after a crash are scary and confusing. Just remember: It’s always best to call 911. Keep in mind that what you say to the 911 dispatcher will be recorded – and please remember to tell him or her about the nature of the call and any injuries. Anyone who has ever filed a car insurance claim knows how imperative getting the details of the crash on the record via a police report. That report is even more important if you believe that you’ve been injured as a result of a defective product.
- Get the Skinny – Both your insurance company and your personal injury lawyer will need to know the basic information about the parties involved in the crash. Just the basic information will do: Get the names, addresses and phone numbers for all involved. And that doesn’t just mean other drivers and their passengers. It would also be prudent to ask for the names and contact numbers for any witnesses, as well – were there any pedestrians who witnessed the crash?
- Take Photographs – In a court of law, you can talk about the crash that caused your injury. You can explain the way the weather was or how the road conditions were. But it’s another thing entirely to be able to document your story through photographic evidence. Thankfully, because of the popularity of smart phones, most people have constant access to a camera. Don’t be afraid to take as many photos as you can following a crash that you believe was caused by defective equipment. This means you should take pictures of the vehicle from different angles, take pictures of yourself, of any other motorists, or street signs, license plates and anything else that can help illustrate what the scene looked like.
- Write Down What You Remember From the Crash – Sometimes, even the most minor detail can help make or break a defective product case. As soon as you get an opportunity, sit down and write a narrative of what you remember from the crash. Jot down as many details from the accident as you remember: What do you remember happening right before the crash? What sounds did you hear? If other motorists or bystanders were present after the crash, what discussion took place? These details can quickly fade, so it is of paramount importance to write it all down in your own words.
- Get Legal Help – If you or someone you love has been injured in a car crash you believe was caused by a defective automobile, you may want to consider calling a skilled personal injury lawyer to help determine if you have a legal claim. An attorney who understands defective product litigation will be able to advise you on what steps to take to ensure that you are complying with insurance and other deadlines without compromising your potential legal claim.
Call the Pittsburgh personal injury attorneys at Pribanic & Pribanic today to schedule a free consultation.