We often think about what to do if we’re directly involved in an accident, but equally important is what you should do if you witness a Louisville accident. As a witness, you are incredibly valuable to emergency personnel, both to relay your account of the events, and also to provide initial care to victims.
If you are the witness to a Louisville automobile accident, you should keep these five points in mind:
- Upon seeing an accident occur, pull off to the side of the road as soon as it is safe to do so. If possible position your vehicle 20 feet away from the collision to leave room for emergency personnel to get as close as they need to, and also to create a safe distance between yourself and the accident scene.
- Try your best to stay calm, step back and assess the situation. If there are others around, quickly enlist their help by asking someone to call 911, and have them stay on the phone as directed by the emergency services. Even in the case of a minor accident, emergency personnel should be contacted.
- If at all possible, do not move the victim; and wait for the emergency services to arrive. However, if you feel the life of the victim is in imminent danger by remaining in the vehicle, then move them to a safe location, making every attempt to stabilize their head and neck. Only move them if it is essential for their safety to do so.
- When emergency personnel arrive, step back and let them take over. Do not leave the accident scene until you have given your contact information to the police; they will need to speak with you and get a recount of what you saw.
- Although you may want to, do not post pictures or comments about the accident on social media sites as doing so may jeopardize the case for those involved. Also keep in mind that this is a private moment for the victims, and coming across pictures of their loved ones in such a public forum could be upsetting.
It is very important that you act only if it’s safe to do so. You are not invincible and should not take risks that will endanger your life and thus create another victim for emergency personnel to deal with.
In the worst case scenario, even with your very best intentions, the victims of the accident could succumb to their injuries. As difficult as it may be, you can only do what is reasonably possible, and by stopping at the accident scene and showing compassion towards the victims, you are already doing a lot.
If you find it difficult to deal with the emotional stress following the accident, reach out to your local police department. They can offer assistance in finding a counselor that can help you work through your emotions.
If you or a loved one have been involved in an automobile accident, contact a Louisville Personal Injury Attorney to discuss your rights and if you’re entitled to compensation.
Schedule your free initial consultation to discuss your case with Richard Breen Law Offices at 2950 Breckenridge Lane Suite 3, Louisville, KY 40220 if you are in a car accident. You can call at 502-473-0579.