In Sydney, hit and run car accidents are all too common. We only hear about the ones that are reported in the news, but there are many that don’t get blown out in the media circuit and the victims are left often with the scars of the accident for the rest of their lives, knowing the perpetrator is still out there.
If you are involved in a car crash, regardless of whether it’s a hit and run, there are a few important steps you should take.
1. If you are able, pull over to the side of the road. The other vehicle involved in the accident should do the same. Details should be exchanged between drivers while police are called. Unless it is a very minor scratch or bump, and then they may be no need to inform the authorities.
2. While you are waiting for the police to arrive, look around and see if there are any security systems or surveillance video cameras nearby. If you are outside a shopping centre, petrol station or major intersection there is likely to be a video surveillance system. Some homes even have cctv systems fitted. Obtaining this footage is important because if there is any dispute as to what happened, you want to be able to use the HD video footage in court as evidence to show what transpired.
3. Look around you and see if there are any witnesses who would have seen the accident. Often times other motorists will pull over to make sure that the people involved in an accident are ok, or they will also inform the drivers that they will volunteer as a witness if need be. Having a witness is very useful especially if the driver in the wrong is arguing what actually happened.
If you are the victim of a hit and run, this footage is very important and can help police bring the driver to justice.
4. If you are injured, ensure that an ambulance is phoned. If the police are concerned about your state of wellbeing, they may decide that you need to be attended to by a paramedic for shock or minor cuts and bruises.
5. If you decide that a visit to your local GP is necessary, make sure you go that day, or at the very latest, the following day. Ask your GP to give you a complete examination and tell them what happened. It’s important that if you experience any health problems as a result of the accident you have the record of attending your GP and them treating you for ailments directly relating the to the accident soon after it happened.
6. Inform a family member or close friend who can come and pick you up and take you home. In the case that you are still able to drive, you might not want to, so having someone come and help you get home is the best option.
One of the most important things to try to do when you are involved in an accident is keep your cool, and try to stay calm. Others can become irate and disorderly, but this will simply reflect poorly on them. Take a few deep breathes and focus on the steps listed above.