Getting hit by a car may seem like an uncommon accident, but it happens more than we think. According to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, more than 700 pedestrians died in traffic crashes in 2020 in Florida. Most times, these accidents are caused by the drivers. When that happens, the injured pedestrian has the right to seek compensation for their damages. To get compensation from the driver at fault, pedestrians must know what steps to take immediately after the accident.
1). Remain calm
If a car hits you, you must remain calm. Losing your temper will only make it harder to communicate with the driver, something that you’ll need to do. If possible, move out of the street and go to the sidewalk. Make sure to get medical attention as soon as possible for any apparent injuries. Once you do this, ask the witnesses and the driver to stay with you. You will need them when the police arrive.
2). Call an ambulance and the police
If you can, call an ambulance or ask someone else to do so. You must do this even if you don’t feel any pain. You may have been injured without realizing it; adrenaline can mask pain. After calling the ambulance, get in touch with the police. The police will arrive at the scene and make a report of the accident, of which you can ask for a copy later. This police report will be necessary for your injury claim, as it will include the witnesses’ statements and the written facts about the accident.
3). Get the driver’s information
The driver must stay with you until the police come. If they were at fault for the accident, they might have to pay for your medical expenses, so you need to get their contact information to get in touch with them later. Also, ask them for their plate number, license number and insurance information. Be careful when you talk with them and do not apologize for anything, as they could use your words against you.
4). Gather and keep the evidence
If you can, take many pictures and videos of the scene of the accident. Take photos of the street, the car, the pavement, etc. However, do not post anything on social media, as this could hurt your claim. When you get home, keep the clothes you were wearing that day and put them in a bag, as you could use this as evidence later on. Also, write down what happened in as much detail as possible. As the days pass, you may forget about the details of the accident, so it is best to write them down while they are still fresh in your memory.
5). Go to the doctor
You must get a medical examination even if you don’t feel pain or discomfort anywhere on your body. Some symptoms of severe medical conditions can show days after the accident, and you could be in danger if you don’t seek treatment immediately. Ask the doctor for a copy of your record and evaluation, as you’ll need it to prove the severity of your injuries to the driver’s insurance company.
Your rightful compensation
The final step you need to take is to get in touch with the other driver’s insurer and tell them what happened. However, you must be careful not to give them more information than necessary. If they ask for your injuries or mention a settlement, do not say or approve anything unless you talk to your lawyer first. If the insurer doesn’t accept your claim or refuses to give you a fair amount of compensation, you can file a lawsuit against them. It is your right to get compensation for your injuries, and you can fight for it in court.