What to Do if You’re in a Car Accident on Vacation
Accidents happen even on vacation. That is why it is important to arm yourself with the relevant information to stay guarded. Since there is a chance that a car accident on vacation may happen, you should take note of the steps to take in case of an accident situation so that the matter can be easily managed. Moreover, these steps will later help you in your personal injury claim against the responsible party.
Car Accident While on a Vacation in California
California is known for its national parks, beaches, lakes, amusement parks, the Pacific Coast Highway, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the list goes on. Residents and tourists alike can come to California and have so many things to do and places to visit.
However, California ranked first in 2018 and second in 2019 with the highest number of reported fatal car accidents compared to other states in the U.S.. That’s not to mention that being injured in an auto collision can come with serious property damage and high medical bills. Thus, taking all the precautions is a must to avoid getting into a car accident while on vacation in California.
Steps to Take When You Get into a Car Accident While on Vacation in California
To make sure that you know what to do if an auto accident happens to you or your loved one while on vacation, here are some of the crucial steps to take so you can get immediate medical treatment and file the right insurance claim:
Alert the authorities, call 911.
When someone sustains injuries from a car accident on vacation, whether major or seemingly minor, you need to call emergency services right away to let the authorities know and to see the right medical professional who will check and document the extent of your injuries.
If you get in a car accident on a vacation, you should call 911 for many other reasons. First, rescuers can come to you immediately and provide what you appropriately need. Second, an ambulance can respond to your emergency care, especially when you or someone else with you is severely injured. Firefighters can also be brought to the scene to help extract a trapped occupant from a vehicle. Furthermore, police officers can write a crash report about the incident which will later help your auto accident claim against the at-fault party.
Take photos; gather evidence.
If you are able to or another occupant of the vehicle or a representative, make sure that you take photos of the scene of the accident. Take a photo of your damaged vehicle as well as the other party’s vehicle. This will help the police determine who is at fault in case the cars have been moved from their last position after the impact. Also, take a photo of any skid marks, debris from the property damage, and other important things that could be used as evidence for your personal injury claim.
In case the accident is caused by damaged roads or other hazards on the road, take a photo of this hazard. If you get injuries that are visible on your body, take photos, too. You should also take note of where your car will be taken. If you have a dash cam on your vehicle, keep a copy of the footage.
Remember that liabilities can be determined with the help of these photos as well as other evidence when you file a police report and an insurance claim. This is important because the other party might lie about what happened, causing his/her insurance company to deny liability, delay the claim process, or cause the filing of a case in court — which can also prolong your agony. However, armed with evidence, your claim can be sufficiently supported and your personal injury lawyer can assist you well.
Take the personal, vehicle, and insurance information of the other party and give yours.
Under California Vehicle Code Section 16025, each driver involved in a car accident in California must exchange the following details with each other:
- Driver’s name and address
- Driver’s license number
- Registered owner’s name of the car and his/her address if different than the driver
- Vehicle identification number
- Insurance carrier, address, and the insurance policy number
Failure to do the same will result in the violation of the statute and the payment of a fine. Besides this mandate and consequence, this information is needed by your accident lawyer to investigate the case and make the proper claim in your favor sooner.
Get medical attention.
When you remember the first step after you get involved in a car accident while on vacation in California, you will surely get the emergency treatment you require after the collision. For persons who lost consciousness or incurred bone fractures, head lacerations, or severe chest bruises, they will be taken to the hospital. But if you feel like you are not in pain or there are no visible injuries, this may be your adrenaline masking your pain, thus causing you to refuse treatment.
The best thing to do is to not refuse to be taken to the hospital. The effect of the adrenaline rush may wear off and you will regret not knowing at once what might be wrong with you. Still, it is best for you to get the immediate evaluation and treatment that you need.
After the ER visit and you continue to be in pain, visit other specialists for accident injuries so you can get more specifically checked out. Take note of your visits, the checkup dates, and the name of the physician. This is necessary for your personal injury claim.
Make sure you have active auto accident insurance coverage.
Of course, if you are not at fault, the other party’s insurance carrier will be responsible for your damages or losses. Even a percentage of fault on your part still allows you to make auto accident claims in your favor. However, if the other party left you on the scene, or does not have insurance coverage, or has insufficient coverage for your damages, your own insurance policy that has uninsured motorist coverage will pay for your losses.
In any case, do not forget to contact your insurance company. Remember to avoid giving recorded statements, admitting fault, or downplaying your injuries (you can never be certain of the extent of your injuries). Most adjusters want to pay cheap and immediately settle their cases. You can avoid this by simply telling them the basic information about the accident and reaching out to your lawyer for proper legal advice.
Call a California personal injury law attorney.
If you get into a car accident on vacation, a personal injury attorney can guide you throughout the process. If you have someone in your contacts, after calling 911, immediately contact your accident attorney about the incident. You will be reminded of the things you should do as well as be able to answer whatever questions you have about the incident.
Unlike your insurance carrier or the other party, you should be very detailed with your personal injury attorney. He/she requires all the information to properly investigate your case and later make a generous claim on your behalf. When the case goes to court, the more important thing is to stay in touch with your lawyer. This will ensure that you get the compensation you deserve for your medical treatment, property damage, and other losses.
Other Accidents on a Vacation in California
Aside from a car accident on vacation, you can get injured due to other causes. As you get on your itinerary, you may encounter slippery floors on your hotel, the resort, or convenience stores as well as poorly maintained nature trails, frayed zip lines, poorly prepared food by restaurants, and so on. In these cases, your personal injury lawyer can help you make the right claim against the responsible owner of the premises.
Contact Our Auto Accident Attorneys Today!
To know more about what to do if a car accident happens while you’re on vacation, reach out to our trusted and experienced personal injury lawyers. Farahi Law Firm is an expert at insurance laws. We will take good care of your case and make sure that you get excellent representation. Our personal injury attorneys will ensure that you receive the best medical treatment and the compensation that you deserve for your case. Call us today at (844) 824-2955. We are available 24/7. Free consultation. No fees unless we win.