If you drive a truck for a living, you need to be concerned about accidents. Most passenger car drivers expect truck drivers to watch out for them, which increases the risk for accidents. Unfortunately, whenever you're sharing the road with passenger vehicles, your risk of accidents increases. Before you head back out on the road, make sure you know what to do in the event of an accident. Here are four steps that will help protect you in the event of an accident.
Carry Your Important Documents
If you're a truck driver, it's crucial that you be prepared for potential accidents. One way to do that is to carry your important documents with you at all times. This file should include a copy of your DOT certification to show that you're cleared for driving. It should also contain a copy of your truck maintenance records, as well as your proof of insurance. Having these documents available will help expedite the on-scene investigation following an accident. For maximum protection, carry at least one copy of your documents. That way, you can provide them to the investigating officers.
Contact Your Trucking Company
If you've been in an accident, you'll need to contact your trucking company as soon as possible. If your truck is equipped with electronic on-board recorders, your motor carrier will be notified of the accident electronically. However, it's important for you to contact your carrier, as well. This will give your carrier enough time to dispatch their own investigators, which can help if other drivers are trying to blame you for the accident.
Submit to a Drug/Alcohol Test
Federal regulations require truck drivers to submit to a drug and alcohol test immediately following any accident that involves injuries or fatalities. To make sure that you remain in compliance, it's important that you submit to testing as soon as possible after your accident. If investigating officers request on-the-scene testing, submit to the request. Any delays in testing will require your trucking company to submit paperwork documenting reasons for those delays.
Hire an Attorney Immediately
If you've been involved in an accident while driving a truck, you need to seek immediate legal representation, especially if injuries or fatalities were involved. The trucking company you drive for may try to distance themselves from liability, which will leave you vulnerable in lawsuits. Not only that, but you'll need your own truck accident attorney to help protect your rights as an accident victim.Share