When it comes to pedestrian safety, Florida has the highest danger index in the nation – and it’s always getting worse. In just the past 10 years, pedestrian fatalities have jumped by 45%, making it quite dangerous to walk along the streets even during the daytime hours. So, if you’re going to walk from place to place, it’s important to know what to do if you get hit by a car in Florida. To help you remember the steps, here’s a helpful guide on just what to do after an accident occurs.
Call an Ambulance for All Injured Parties
After an accident, the first step is to call for an ambulance to help all injured parties. The EMTs will come to the scene of the collision to assess everyone for injuries and transport them to the hospital if need be.
If you need medical care, then you will need to leave the next several steps to the police and simply ride in the ambulance to the hospital. Your health and safety are number one, after all, so don’t hesitate to get care right when you need it.
Photograph the Scene of the Accident
As with car accidents, photographs help tell insurance companies, lawyers, and the court about how, where, and why you got hit by a car. High-quality accident photos help eliminate confusion about the details to ensure you get fairly compensated for any injuries caused by another party’s negligence. They also help back up statements by all involved parties and any witnesses who provide their testimony.
So, if you have a camera on you, take photos from several angles, and then save them to the cloud for later review. Remember to get the street names, crosswalks, and any nearby traffic signs in your photos as well.
Write Down Info from All Parties
In order to file a claim with your insurance company and pursue compensation for your injuries in court, you’ll need info about who hit you. To get that, you’ll want to start by writing down the plate numbers of all involved cars, carefully noting which one hit you. Take a photo of the license plates, if possible, so there’s no doubt who was involved.
Then, chat with the drivers, if possible, to gather their names, phone numbers, and insurance info. If the drivers will not provide that information, you may need to call the police for help with that matter.
Collect Contact Info from Witnesses
As you look around and decide what to do after getting hit by a car, note any witnesses in your midst. They might be simply observing the scene or coming out to help either you or the other parties.
Either way, you’ll want to jot down their contact information, like name and phone number, so they can provide their account of what happened as well. The witness statements can confirm your version of the events, further clearing up uncertainties about what happened.
Write Down Your Account of the Events
Memories are fickle and details can get fuzzy within just a few days of the accident. Unfortunately, it can take a lot longer for the insurance company to process your claim – and even more time if your case has to go to court.
You can avoid losing any details by immediately writing down your account of the events. Start from well before you got hit by a car and include details about what happened afterward. Be sure to include dates, times, street names, and all the details that help create a clear picture of what happened.
Get Checked Out by a Doctor
Even if you do not need immediate medical attention from the EMTs, you should still get checked out by a doctor within 24 hours of the accident. Whiplash and many other soft-tissue injuries do not show up right away. You might feel okay after returning home only to end up in severe pain upon waking up the next morning.
Fractures, head injuries, and other serious conditions can also fail to cause symptoms right away, potentially resulting in serious complications. To avoid all that, you’ll just need to visit an urgent care center or make an appointment with your doctor after handling matters at the scene of the accident.
Contact a Lawyer in Your Area
After getting your medical care needs out of the way, you can schedule a free consultation with a Florida personal injury lawyer to get their take on the situation. At your consultation, they’ll go over your account of the accident, and then let you know about all your options. You can then decide if you’d like to hire them to handle your care or if you’d like to move forward on your own.
Were You Hit by a Car in Florida? Fiol & Morros Law Group Can Help
Now that you know what to do if you get hit by a car in Florida, you can move through the steps with confidence that you aren’t forgetting anything. Once you make it to the final step, reach out to experienced Tampa, Florida car accident lawyers from Fiol & Morros Law Group. We’re always here to help you understand your rights and get fairly compensated for your injuries.