Staying Safe When Trying to Collect Evidence After a Car Crash

Posted on behalf of Peter T. Nicholl in Car Accidents Published on February 25, 2021 and updated on March 15, 2022.

car crashSometimes crash victims take the time to collect evidence at the scene. This can help victims with building a case against the at-fault driver.

However, you cannot count on passing drivers to exercise an appropriate amount of caution. There have been numerous cases of drivers and passengers on the roadside getting hit by passing cars because their drivers were not paying attention. There are also crashes caused by victims being careless and wandering too close to the nearest lane of traffic.

Review the tips below on staying safe when trying to collect evidence after a car crash. Keep in mind, your safety is the most important thing. You should not put yourself at risk of further harm simply to gather evidence. Your attorney can investigate later and may even be able to recover video footage of the crash if there was a camera nearby.

If you need help after a crash, call today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Maryland auto accident attorney.

Calling the Police

Make sure to call 9-1-1 immediately so the police can be dispatched to the scene. They can investigate and secure the scene to ensure your safety and the safety of the others involved in the accident. They can also complete a report on the crash that will be helpful as you pursue compensation.

Remaining Calm

As difficult as it is, it is important to try your best to remain calm. Getting angry with the other driver can only make the situation worse. You never know how someone else may react to you getting angry.

You and your passengers may have suffered injuries and you should try your best to help them out before the police and other first responders arrive.

Keeping Yourself Away from Danger

Even though it is important to help those who suffered injuries, you do not want to put yourself at risk for additional injuries. Do your best to stay away from oncoming traffic. You may think passing drivers will pay attention and will not hit you, but that can be a dangerous assumption.

Simply getting out of your car to assess the damage could result in you getting hit by a passing car and suffering potentially fatal injuries. Getting out of your car and moving around could potentially aggravate your injuries. It is important to use your best judgment and to assume other drivers are not paying attention.

Make sure to turn on your hazard lights and move your car as far away from traffic as you can. If you are on an interstate near an exit and you and the other driver are able, you may consider getting off and stopping somewhere else. At the very least you will be somewhere with a much slower speed limit.

Responding to Road Rage

Even if the other driver caused the crash, he or she may get mad at you. He or she may get out of the car and start screaming at you and heading in your direction to confront you. This person may make threats of physical violence against you and those in your vehicle.

Engaging with this person could make things worse. Who knows if this individual is carrying a gun, either on his or her person or in his or her vehicle? Even making eye contact could set someone off. Lock your doors and wait for the police to arrive.

If your car still runs and you feel you are in grave danger, you could tell the other driver to follow you to the nearest police station. You do not want the other driver following you to your home or place of work.

Evidence That Can Help Your Claim

Any evidence you collect may help your attorney to strengthen your claim. However, there are some pieces of evidence that may be more valuable than others. For example, taking pictures of the damage to both vehicles and debris on the roadway could be particularly helpful. Pictures of bloody clothing and visible injuries may also be helpful.

Witnesses can help a claim, but it is important to find exactly what they saw and if they might want to help you as you pursue compensation. If the witness did not see much of the crash or his or her account seems to be wildly inaccurate, it is unlikely this person’s statements would help your claim.

Something else you can do without even getting out of your car is to write down what you remember about the crash. You would be surprised how quickly you can forget what happened in a crash.

Unsure if You Have a Case? Call Today

The Law Offices of Peter T. Nicholl has been assisting car crash victims for more than 30 years. We have extensive knowledge of relevant laws and a track record of success.

If you have any questions after an accident, give us a call to schedule a free legal consultation. There are no upfront fees, which means no risk to you.

We have secured millions on behalf of our clients. Call 410-907-3957.