WTVM Legal Break – What Happens if You are in a Car Wreck?
Injury & Accident Attorney Serving Nearby Areas of Columbus & Fort Benning, Georgia and Phenix City, Alabama
Gary Bruce discusses steps to take if you are involved in a car wreck. The first, Gary suggests that you gain your composure and figure out what is going on. Being involved in a wreck can be a startling experience, but do not forget to do important things, such as calling the police, getting witness info, and taking photographs. See our frequently asked auto accident questions for more information on how to handle a wreck.
While injuries are dealt with first, there are other things to keep in mind like property damage and liability. By calling the police, you are increasing the chance that liability will be determined and there will be a record of which party is liable. The police can also obtain witness information and include that in the report which will eventually be seen by your insurance company. If an investigation is necessary, the insurance company will have a witness contact information. While the report is being filled out, you can take photos or videos with your phone and all of that is admissible evidence. Dashcam videos have also been useful in these cases and provide dramatic evidence of the impact, movement of the body and mechanism of injury.
Maureen: Hello there and welcome to Legal Break, I’m Maureen Akers and with me today our legal expert, Gary Bruce. Gary thank you so much for joining us again today on our segment.
Gary: Thank you, looking forward to it.
Maureen: We’re going to talk about some different things each and every week, its a fairly new segment, kind of getting everything started. And this week we’re going to talk about what happens to you if you’re in a car wreck. I mean it can happen, it probably happens to just about every one of us that is driving out there. So what do you do first?
Gary: Well I think the thing to do first, I’ve been in them, you know we all have I guess. Get your composure, kind of figure out what’s going on. From a lawyer standpoint, what I see the mistakes people make is maybe they don’t call the police. You need to call the police, if there’s witnesses in the area you need to get their name and number. All kinds of issues come up – whether you’re hurt or not. I mean about fixing the vehicle, you know whose fault it was, and who’s going to be responsible. You gotta be proactive, and at this point there really is no reason not to, Maureen. You know with our phones, what we have, and you can even take a video of somebody, what they say at the scene. And it’s admissible, we talked about that some weeks before. And you can take pictures of where things are, or where things are situated, the damage to the vehicle, so all that’s important.
Maureen: Yeah actually I was I was in a slight fender bender earlier this year. And that’s the first thing I did, pulled out my phone took pictures of his license plate, and his license when he pulled it out, and such as that just so I made sure I had the record of that when I needed it.
Gary: Used to be in the old days the truck drivers were given cameras to carry around and take pictures of the scene. You know we as just drivers didn’t think about doing that, but now it’s so easy. Sometimes you’re discombobulated, you know not really in yourself. But it still get the camera out- I mean it really picture’s worth a thousand words. Yeah we see it makes a difference.
Maureen: So as far as and it has to be on top of the collecting evidence, are the new dash cams useful in any way?
Gary: You know, the dash cams are amazing. I don’t see many people with them, but I had a client once who had one that showed what it did to him inside the vehicle. And it wasn’t that bad of a wreck, I mean you wouldn’t- nobody went off a cliff in flames, you know. But what it showed was him being thrown forward into the steering wheel, and back, and whipping his neck. I mean it was amazing piece of evidence that we don’t consider very often. And it was dramatic, not only did it show whose fault it was but it showed why he was having the problems he was having. You know those are the ones that face backwards and forwards. I think there’s some evidence that’s valuable there. We get them from the police department when necessary, It captures a lot of what happened. So there’s a good bit of evidence that needs to be preserved, and you know don’t be bashful about doing it.
Maureen: Right, so they should definitely call when we go to your website.
Gary: Well that’ll work. If you have questions about all that, give me a call or go to our website: Garybrucelaw.com I appreciate the opportunity to talk to you about it.
Maureen: All right thank you so very much, and I look forward to seeing you on the very next Legal Break.