Getting in a road accident can be a traumatic experience, especially if you are involved in it. The number of traffic accidents that happen every day is staggering, and the ones that involve pedestrians or vehicle occupants account for only a small fraction of total road fatalities.
Nonetheless, one can never prepare himself/herself fully enough for this kind of situation. There’s no better time than now to hone your first-aid skills and know what to do should you get involved in one of these accidents.
When you get involved in a road accident
- If you are the driver, stay put in the vehicle. This way, it will be easier for law enforcers to establish your side of the story. Also, call the emergency number if necessary and ask for help.
- If you are not the driver or a passenger but play some kind of supporting role in the accident, you should be ready to provide assistance. Do not leave if help has not arrived yet because it is your responsibility to ensure the safety of all parties involved.
- Gather as much critical information as possible. Contact details, vehicle registration number, etc.—these are some of the things you can use to identify those who are involved in the accident.
- If the accident happens to a pedestrian, there is a greater chance that they will be severely injured. It’s your responsibility to provide first aid. Use your clothing to stop the bleeding and immobilize any broken limbs. Do not move an injured person unless absolutely necessary because this may cause more injuries.
- Assess the situation and take note of important details. If you witness a road accident but are not involved in it, make sure that you stay out of any possible dispute. For example, avoid taking photos or recording videos on your phone because this can be used as evidence to support either party’s claims.
- If someone gets injured, don’t forget to call for help as quickly as possible. Take note of the extent of injuries and keep the injured person comfortable until help arrives.
- If you have been drinking before getting involved in a road accident, there is a greater chance that you will be charged with a DUI if apprehended by law enforcers. Make sure that you have a designated driver or call a cab if necessary.
- If the accident involves an Uber and you’re in the car as a passenger, call an Uber accident attorney in the area to help sort things out. Lawyers like this look after the welfare of the passengers as well other motorists on the road.
Prevention and Preparation
Communities and schools still teach young drivers that the best way to avoid road accident lawsuits is by abiding by traffic rules and regulations, and suffering the consequences if you happen to break them.
To avoid getting into an accident, one of the most important things you can do is to always wear your seat belt. In the United States, the survival rate is higher for vehicle occupants who wear seat belts. Most states and cities have mandatory seat belt laws, and the fines for not buckling up are steep.
In addition to wearing seat belts, you should also buckle your kids whenever you’re driving somewhere. The Department of Transportation recommends that children between 8 and 12 years old should always use a child safety seat while riding in a vehicle, while kids under eight years old should be seated in the rear of the car.
Stay focused on the road and not your phone
Texting while driving is illegal in many countries, including the US. You should also pay attention to speed limits and road signs since these are set for a reason—to ensure the safety of everyone on the road.
Keep an eye out for pedestrians—these are often the casualties in traffic accidents. You can injure or kill someone else if you’re not careful, so make sure to keep your vehicle at a safe distance when you’re driving.
As with cars, most cities also have laws about bicycles and riding the roads. It’s essential to make yourself visible by wearing bright-colored clothing and using proper lights whenever you’re riding a bike, particularly before dawn and during late hours.
Preventing accidents on the road and maintaining the safety of motorists and pedestrians, especially the young ones, should be the topmost priority of every driver.
But no matter how careful you are, there is still a chance that you could get into a road accident. When that happens, stay alert, think clearly, and recollect the details of the accident so that you know what to do next.