What If I Am a Witness in a Pedestrian Accident?
When you witness a pedestrian accident, whether as another pedestrian, bystander, or motorist, you have a moral obligation to help the people in the crash. You are not legally obligated to render aid, but lending a hand can help save lives and support the injured pedestrian’s case. What if the situation was reversed, and you were in the pedestrian crash? Of course, you’d want people who witnessed the crash to support your case. Here are some guidelines to consider when you witness a pedestrian accident.
This is especially crucial if the pedestrian crash results in injuries or death. Don’t assume that another person has already called 911 or the police. During the call, tell the operator where exactly you are, how many people are involved, and if there are injured people.
Before helping anyone, ensure that you’re in a safe location before you stop to assess the situation or go out of your vehicle. In some cases, being the first person to respond to an accident can be risky. Other cars may crash into the stopped vehicle, especially if there’s heavy traffic. If you’re in your car, park it away from the accident scene and activate your emergency lights. Check for potential hazards, including broken glass, fires, or leaks, before approaching the scene.
Assist Injured People Carefully
As you approach the accident scene, look out for possible dangers. Tread lightly if the people involved appear to be fighting or angry. Otherwise, assess the injuries as best as you can and only move an injured person if not doing so will further harm them. Keep in mind that moving an injured person could worsen their condition. Instead, assure them that you’ve called for help and encourage them to remain calm until help arrives.
Provide Information About What You Witnessed
Witness testimony can help the parties involved in the pedestrian accident understand what happened. You should inform the responding officer of what you witnessed, but don’t make any determinations or guesses about fault. Stick to what you saw and know to be factual. If you can’t wait for the police to arrive, give the parties involved in the crash your contact details. Expect one or both parties and an insurance company to call you and ask you about what you witnessed.
Consider Giving a Statement or Testifying
It’s important to note that an attorney or the court may reach out to you later to help in their investigation of the pedestrian accident. You’re not legally required to become a witness in the court case, except if the judge orders a summons. If you receive a court summons, you must go to court on the appointed date and provide your testimony. Otherwise, you will face fines or jail time.
Speak to a Skilled Clearwater Pedestrian Accident Attorney Now
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident or have witnessed one and need legal advice, contact the Clearwater pedestrian accident attorney at Tragos, Sartes & Tragos right away. You can schedule your free consultation by calling 727-441-9030 or contacting us online.