What to Do If You’re Involved in an 18-Wheeler Accident: Steps to Take to Protect Yourself

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Being involved in an 18-wheeler accident can be a devastating and life-altering experience. The sheer size and weight of these commercial vehicles can cause significant damage, resulting in severe injuries and property damage. If you find yourself in such a situation, it’s crucial to know the necessary steps to take in order to protect yourself and your legal rights. In this comprehensive guide, we will provide an in-depth overview of the essential actions to consider following an 18-wheeler accident and explain why seeking help from a personal injury lawyer is crucial for addressing the legal implications of your accident.

1.Ensure Your Safety and Seek Medical Attention

The first and most important step following an 18-wheeler accident is to ensure your safety and the safety of others involved. If possible, move to a safe location away from traffic. Call 911 immediately to report the accident and request medical assistance for anyone who may be injured. Even if you believe your injuries are minor, it is essential to seek medical attention. Some injuries, such as internal trauma or whiplash, may not manifest symptoms immediately but can have long-term effects if left untreated. An experienced healthcare professional can evaluate your condition and provide necessary medical care.

2.Document the Accident Scene

While waiting for the authorities to arrive, it is crucial to document the accident scene. If you are physically able, gather evidence that may be useful in establishing liability and supporting your claim. Take photographs or videos of the vehicles involved, the damage sustained, skid marks, road conditions, and any visible injuries. These visual records will serve as essential evidence later on. Additionally, exchange contact and insurance information with the truck driver and any witnesses present. The more evidence you can collect, the stronger your case may become.

3.Contact the Police and Obtain an Accident Report

When the police arrive at the scene, provide them with accurate and detailed information about the accident. Be honest and objective when describing the events leading up to the collision. Request a copy of the accident report, as it will serve as an official document that can be valuable when filing an insurance claim or seeking legal recourse. The accident report typically includes vital information such as the date, time, and location of the accident, the parties involved, statements from witnesses, and preliminary findings regarding fault.

4.Preserve Evidence and Gather Information

In addition to documenting the accident scene, it is essential to preserve any evidence related to the incident. This includes keeping copies of medical records, bills, and receipts, as well as maintaining a record of any missed workdays or other financial losses resulting from the accident. Retain all communication related to the accident, including emails, text messages, and voicemails. These pieces of evidence will help strengthen your case and demonstrate the extent of your damages. It is also important to obtain information about the truck and its driver, such as the company they work for, the truck’s identification number, and the driver’s commercial driver’s license (CDL) information.

5.Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company

Notify your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible, even if the accident was not your fault. Cooperate fully with their investigation and provide them with accurate details regarding the incident. However, be cautious when speaking with insurance adjusters from the other party’s insurance company. It is advisable to avoid giving recorded statements or accepting a quick settlement offer without consulting with a personal injury attorney first. Remember that insurance companies often seek to minimize their costs, and their initial offers may not fully cover your damages.

6.Seek Legal Representation

When dealing with the aftermath of an 18-wheeler accident, seeking legal representation from a personal injury lawyer is highly recommended. Here are several reasons why hiring a personal injury lawyer is crucial:

  • Knowledge and Expertise: Personal injury lawyers specialize in handling cases involving truck accidents. They have extensive knowledge of the laws and regulations surrounding these types of accidents. They understand the complexities involved, such as federal trucking regulations, and can navigate through the legal process with ease. With their expertise, they can assess the strengths and weaknesses of your case and develop a solid legal strategy to maximize your chances of obtaining fair compensation.
  • Investigation and Evidence Gathering: An experienced attorney will conduct a thorough investigation of the accident. They will gather evidence such as accident reconstruction reports, trucking company records, driver logs, maintenance records, and black box data (if available). This evidence is crucial in establishing liability and building a strong case on your behalf. Additionally, they may work with accident reconstruction experts, medical professionals, and other specialists to strengthen your claim.
  • Insurance Negotiations: Dealing with insurance companies can be daunting, especially when it comes to 18-wheeler accidents. Insurance adjusters are skilled at minimizing payouts or denying claims altogether. A personal injury lawyer will handle all communications with insurance companies on your behalf. They will advocate for your rights, ensure that you are not taken advantage of, and work to negotiate a fair settlement that covers the full extent of your damages.
  • Legal Advocacy and Representation: In the event that a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiation, a personal injury lawyer will not hesitate to take your case to court. They will provide strong legal representation, presenting your case to a judge and jury and fighting for your rights to secure the compensation you deserve. They will handle all legal filings, procedural requirements, and court appearances, allowing you to focus on your recovery.
  • Knowledge of Local Laws and Procedures: Personal injury lawyers have a deep understanding of the local courts and procedures in the Houston area. They know the judges, the opposing attorneys, and the nuances of the legal system. This familiarity allows them to develop winning legal strategies tailored to the specific jurisdiction, increasing the likelihood of a successful outcome for your case.

DeHoyos Accident Attorneys, PLLC: An Experienced Personal Injury Attorney in Houston, Texas

If you’ve been involved in an 18-wheeler accident, taking the appropriate steps to protect yourself is crucial. However, it is equally important to seek legal representation from a skilled personal injury lawyer who can navigate the legal complexities and advocate for your rights.

At DeHoyos Accident Attorneys, PLLC, we specialize in helping accident victims seek fair compensation for their injuries and losses. Our team understands the intricacies of 18-wheeler accidents and the laws governing them in Texas. We work tirelessly to maximize the compensation our clients receive, using our deep insight into personal injury law and our firm understanding of local courts and procedures in the Houston area.

If you’ve been injured in an accident in Houston due to the negligence, recklessness, or carelessness of another individual, you shouldn’t have to suffer the financial and personal consequences without restitution. Contact DeHoyos Accident Attorneys, PLLC at (832) 745-4878 for a free consultation. We take our clients’ adverse situations personally and work meticulously to ensure they receive the compensation they deserve. Let us fight for your rights and help you rebuild your life after an 18-wheeler accident.



















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“I can’t say enough good things about DeHoyos Accident Attorneys! Mr. Ryan DeHoyos is extremely knowledgeable in his field of Personal Injury. I was injured in a motor vehicle accident last year and Mr. DeHoyos stopped at nothing to get me the compensation I deserved. He kept me updated on my case regularly and guided me to get the medical care I needed. Additionally, his staff is so kind and caring, especially Ashley… Thank you, DeHoyos Accident Attorneys for your professionalism in closing my case…and WINNING big!”


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