I’ve Been Hurt in a Rear-End Accident in Northern California. What Should I Do Now?

Imagine you are a driver who is stopped at an intersection. Out of the blue, another vehicle slams into you from behind. You heard the crash… and now you feel the pain. You probably have a lot of things on your mind in those stressful moments after the crash. One of the first thoughts is probably… what do I do? What can I do? This post will hopefully provide some helpful answers to that and other related questions.

As an example, let’s look at the accident involving P.J., an elderly driver in Salinas. According to a report by The Californian, P.J. was approaching an intersection in Salinas and wanted to turn right. However, as she attempted to turn, she noticed a bicyclist. In order to avoid hitting the bicyclist, P.J. swerved. In so doing, she ended up rear-ending another car at the intersection the report stated.

If you’re injured in crash like that, there are several things you may want to do. First, if you’re pain-free, you may want to take a few moments to record the accident scene with your cell phone. You can take pictures or take video, but only do so after you’ve made sure it is safe to re-enter the crash scene.

First up: Protect yourself by getting the medical help you need

If you’re not pain-free, then you should seek medical care right away. The best way to ensure that an injury does not become more serious than it needs to be is by getting medical diagnosis and treatment promptly. If you experience pain, but that pain doesn’t begin until hours, days or even longer after the accident, seek out medical care immediately after you notice the problem.

Also, don’t worry that this delay in the onset of pain means that you cannot be compensated for your injuries, as that is not necessarily so. The reality is that many types of injuries caused by auto accidents may have delayed-onset symptoms, including no pain for a period of time. Depending on your injury and your physiology, that delay may even be an extended period of time. A skilled medical professional can help you pinpoint the cause of your pain.

Next up: Protect your rights by getting the legal help you need

Once you’ve done those things, one of your next steps should be contacting an experienced San Mateo injury attorney who has experience handling auto accident injuries. Your attorney can help you with many steps that will be essential to your legal case, such as obtaining police accidents reports, identifying potential eyewitnesses or securing the services of an accident reconstruction expert to pinpoint the cause of the crash. Your attorney can then guide through the accumulation and synthesis of all that evidence into a clear, coherent, cohesive and persuasive legal action to get you the compensation you deserve.

Your attorney will also be able to help you identify whom you should sue. Take, for example, P.J.’s accident. Imagine if you were injured while riding in the vehicle that got rear-ended. It is possible that you have a claim for negligence against P.J. for failing to keep her vehicle under control to a sufficient degree. However, if you could also prove that the bicyclist whom P.J. avoided improperly failed to yield the right of way or otherwise violated the rules of the road and caused (at least to some degree) P.J.’s swerve, then you might have a claim against that cyclist, as well.

Your rear-end accident probably has triggered many concerns and many questions. Don’t wait to get the answers and peace-of-mind you need. Talk to the skilled San Mateo personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos. Our attorneys have been helping injured people for many years. To set up a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys, contact us at 650-345-8484 or through our website.