The Boston Globe reports that pedestrian deaths jumped 35% last year, increasing from 75 fatal pedestrian accidents in Boston in 2021 to 101 in 2022. According to the Massachusetts Executive Office of Safety and Security, pedestrian deaths across Massachusetts increased 17% from 2017-2021. These alarming statistics are a stark reminder of the importance of taking steps to protect yourself when you’re out walking.
It's critical that if you are injured in an accident as a pedestrian, you know what steps to take after the accident.
#1. Seek Medical Attention
Seeking medical attention after being involved in a pedestrian accident is of paramount importance, not only for your immediate well-being but also for the long-term consequences that may arise from the incident. The first and foremost reason for seeking medical care is to address any potential injuries, some of which may not be immediately apparent following the accident. The adrenaline rush experienced during a traumatic event can often mask pain and symptoms, leading you to underestimate the severity of your injuries. Prompt medical evaluation ensures that any hidden injuries are detected, diagnosed, and treated as early as possible, minimizing the risk of complications and promoting a faster recovery.
Another crucial reason for seeking medical attention is to establish a clear link between the accident and your injuries. This documentation can play a vital role when it comes to insurance claims and potential legal proceedings. A comprehensive medical record detailing the extent of your injuries, the treatments provided, and any ongoing care required will serve as valuable evidence to support your case. This information can be critical in proving the other party's liability and securing the compensation you deserve for your medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional distress.
Lastly, seeking medical attention demonstrates that you have taken reasonable steps to mitigate the impact of the accident on your health. Insurance companies and opposing legal teams may attempt to argue that your injuries were not a direct result of the accident or that you failed to take appropriate action to address them. By obtaining timely medical care, you strengthen your position in any negotiations or legal proceedings, ensuring that your rights are protected and that you receive the compensation you are entitled to.
#2. File a Police Report
Filing a police report is a crucial step to take after being injured as a pedestrian. Reporting the accident allows for an official record of the incident, which can play a significant role in any insurance claims or legal proceedings that may follow. When the police arrive at the scene, provide them with an accurate account of what transpired, ensuring that all relevant details are documented. A thorough and accurate police report will serve as an essential piece of evidence when establishing fault and seeking compensation for your injuries.
When interacting with the police, be sure to:
- Remain calm and composed
- Provide factual information without speculating or assigning blame
- Request a copy of the police report for your records
#3. Gather Evidence
Thorough documentation of the accident scene and your injuries is essential for building a strong case to support your insurance claims or any potential legal action. By capturing photographic evidence, you create a visual record that can help illustrate the severity of the accident and its impact on your health. Take photos of the location where the accident occurred, any damage to the involved vehicles, and any other relevant factors, such as traffic signs or road conditions, that may have contributed to the incident.
When documenting the scene and your injuries, consider the following:
- Use your smartphone or a camera to take clear, high-resolution photos
- Capture multiple angles and distances to provide a comprehensive view of the scene
- Take photos of your injuries as soon as possible after the accident and throughout your recovery process
In addition to visual documentation, it's crucial to keep detailed records of your medical treatments, expenses, and any other costs related to the accident. This includes doctor visits, prescriptions, physical therapy sessions, and any assistive devices you may require.
These records will help quantify the financial impact of the accident and may be used to calculate the compensation you are entitled to. By meticulously documenting every aspect of your experience, you ensure that you have the necessary evidence to support your claims and protect your rights in the aftermath of a pedestrian accident.
#4. Collect Information from Witnesses and Drivers Involved in the Accident
It's important to gather the contact information of any witnesses who saw the incident unfold. Their statements can provide invaluable insights and corroborate your version of events, further strengthening your case. If possible, also collect the contact and insurance information of the driver involved in the accident. Having this information readily available can expedite the process of filing insurance claims and seeking compensation for your damages.
Make sure that you also take note of the make, model, and color of the vehicle as well as the license plate number. Before leaving the scene, speak with a few witnesses to corroborate your version of events and ask them if they would be willing to provide testimony in case legal proceedings become necessary.
#5. Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer
After taking the necessary steps to ensure your immediate safety and document the accident, it's advisable to consult with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer. An experienced attorney can provide invaluable guidance and representation throughout the process of filing insurance claims and seeking compensation for your damages.
At Percy Law Group, PC, our experienced personal injury attorneys are dedicated to providing compassionate and effective representation for individuals injured as pedestrians. We understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll that such an accident can take on your life, which is why we are committed to helping you navigate the complexities of insurance claims and legal proceedings with confidence. Our team will thoroughly investigate your case, gather evidence, and work tirelessly to build a strong argument that demonstrates the full extent of your damages and the responsibility of the at-fault party.
Our goal is to secure the maximum compensation you deserve for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain, and suffering, and any other damages incurred as a result of the accident. By entrusting your case to our skilled legal team, you can focus on your recovery while we advocate for your best interests.
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident in Massachusetts or Rhode Island, reach out to us online or call us at (508) 206-9900 to schedule a consultation.