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What To Do If a Car Hits You From Behind

Published on Apr 9, 2024 at 7:46 pm in Car Accidents.

What to do if a car hits you from behind

Accidents can happen in a variety of ways, but one of the most traumatic is a rear-end collision. In these cases, the driver is sitting at a light or stopped in traffic; then suddenly, there’s a crash. If you have been involved in these incidents, it can leave you stunned. However, you need to take action to ensure your safety, preserve evidence, and solidify your legal claim.

At Golden Law Office, we have a few tips for what to do if a car hits you from behind.

How Rear-End Collisions Happen

One of the most common types of road accidents is a rear-end collision. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), for 2021, there were 1,770,328, which accounted for 29% of all accidents. In these cases, one vehicle crashes into the back of the other. Rear-end collisions can occur in many different ways.

Unfortunately, distracted driving is a major concern on the road. Other NHTSA data from 2021 highlights how over 3,522 lives have been lost due to distracted drivers. When drivers are not focused, they often fail to notice that traffic has slowed or stopped ahead of them, which can lead to a rear-end accident. Everything from texting to eating can cause these incidents.

But that is not the only cause. Tailgating is another factor. When the other vehicle follows too closely to the car in front, there is minimal time to respond to a complete stop. If the lead vehicle stops quickly, the tailing driver will crash into them.

Sometimes, a driver may make a panic stop. This sudden break can happen for a variety of reasons. The person might think someone else is coming in their lane or there is a reason to make a stop. Regardless of the cases, these sudden actions often result in a collision.

Reduced traction due to wet weather or worn pavement can also factor in rear-end collisions. If drivers don’t adjust their speed to the conditions, they may collide with the vehicle ahead.

The tailing driver is usually considered at fault in rear-end collisions. These accidents can result in a wide range of injuries, such as:

  • Whiplash
  • Back strains and sprains
  • Spinal injuries
  • Head trauma and brain injuries
  • Arm, wrist, and hand injuries
  • Shoulder and knee injuries
  • Abdominal and pelvic damage

All of the above can cause significant injuries. What should you do if you are ever involved in a rear-end accident?

Steps to Take After a Rear-End Accident

If you have been in a rear-end accident, you will want to take a few steps to protect your well-being and legal claim. Some of the steps you will want to take should include:

Always Check for Injuries

If you have been involved in an accident, stay calm and assess yourself and any passengers for injuries. Start by taking a deep breath to steady your nerves and gather your thoughts. Being involved in an accident is a traumatic experience, especially when hit from behind. One moment, you are at a light, and the next, you are injured.

If you or anyone in the vehicle is hurt, seek medical attention immediately. Remember that even minor injuries can become major medical problems if not treated promptly. For example, concussion injuries may not be apparent for hours or even days after the incident. However, if you leave it untreated, you could experience major brain trauma. With this in mind, you always want to err on the side of caution. Call for emergency assistance to ensure medical professionals are on the way to help.

Call the Police

When you contact law enforcement, you need to provide them with as much information as possible. You should mention any injuries sustained by yourself or others involved in the accident, along with any airbag deployment, fuel leaks, or other hazards present at the scene. With that, emergency services respond appropriately and quickly to the situation.

Once police arrive, they will assess the situation and assist as needed. Remember to remain calm and follow any instructions given by the emergency services personnel.

Be Careful What You Say

While it is frustrating after getting hit from behind, you want to avoid confronting the other driver. Often, this can escalate the situation and make matters worse. Instead, you should try to remain calm and focus on exchanging information with the other driver.

Along with that, you will want to avoid discussing faults. Whether you are talking to another driver or answering questions from law enforcement, be mindful of what you say.

Collect Evidence

If you are able to move around, you also want to document the accident. Take photos and videos of both vehicles and the surrounding area to record the damage and the context of the accident. Also, make sure to document the other driver’s license plate number, any damage to their vehicle, any skid marks on the road, and any other relevant details.

Eyewitness accounts are vital to these cases. You may want to collect the contact information from witnesses who saw the accident. Get their names and phone numbers so you can contact them later if needed. The more information you can gather, the better.

After you’ve documented the accident, exchange information with the other driver. You may want to write down their name, contact details, insurance information, and vehicle specifics, including the make, model, and year.

Finally, cooperate with law enforcement when they arrive. They may need to take a report, and they may also need your statement about what happened. Be honest and provide as much information as you can.

Contact a Lawyer

After you have received medical treatment, talked to police, and gathered evidence, you will want to contact an attorney in Lexington who handles car crash cases. They can help you navigate the complicated claims process and advise you on the next steps of your case.

At Golden Law Office, we understand that a rear-end collision can shake you up and leave you frustrated. Our attorneys are ready to handle your claim so you can focus on the most important aspect of your case: your health and well-being.

Golden Law is a local, Kentucky Law Firm, attorneys/lawyers in Fayette County, Kentucky, working in the fields of personal injury, auto accidents, car and truck wrecks; medical malpractice: doctors, hospitals & nursing homes; senior living abuse: neglect, physical abuse, emotional abuse, dehydration, bedsores, catastrophic injuries, and broken bones. If you are considering a lawsuit, call us at 859.469.5000 for a free consultation. We are located at 771 Corporate Dr. Suite 800/ Lexington, Kentucky 40503. We handle cases all over the Commonwealth of Kentucky. We have represented and trained people in major insurance companies & major trucking companies. We have first hand experience and know the ‘inside of the insurance business’ … that’s a distinction that no other law firm can make. We’re Your Advocate. Dale Golden, Laraclay Parker.

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