What to Do if You Witness an Accident

Everyday there are accidents on streets and highways across the state. No one knows when exactly an accident will occur, but many know the devastating impact it will have on a family. The seconds and minutes following an accident are crucial and sometimes can be the difference between life and death. Witnesses to an accident can be invaluable when the immediate aftermath of an accident causes a chaotic scene. If you are a witness to a serious accident or incident, you can assist others by following some of the recommendations as follows:

  • Ensure Your Safety: There are many things that can be done to provide assistance following an accident while still keeping yourself and your loved ones safe. However, a serious accident can affect those directly involved in the accident and bystanders alike. If you are a bystander who has been injured in an accident, it is imperative that you take care of yourself before assisting others. When stopping for an accident, be sure to pull over at a safe place and put your flashers on to alert others who are traveling near the accident area.
  • Call the Police: It is important to call 911 when you witness an accident. Never assume that someone else called law enforcement personnel. If others are on the scene of the accident, you should check with them to see whether 911 has been called. If you are the first to witness the accident, call law enforcement and be sure to note the location of the accident, the roadway and direction of travel, as well as the condition of the parties.
  • Plan a Course of Action: Accidents can have a traumatic effect on those who witness them. You should properly assess the scene before planning your next course of action. If possible, that course of action should include checking on the victims to assess their conditions and directing traffic. When assessing the victim’s health condition, try to avoid moving the victim unless absolutely necessary in case there unknown injuries to the victim’s neck or back.
  • Take Pictures: Taking pictures of the scene of the accident may be extremely valuable. Many times, parties to the accident take photographs of the accident scene. Where there are serious accidents, the parties are sometimes unable to photograph the scene. Once the scene is altered, key details will not be able to be recovered. Be sure to photograph any road conditions or hazards, skid marks, and the position and condition of the vehicles.

About Colombo Law

Colombo Law is a full service personal injury law firm seeking to ensure that our clients obtain just compensation. We assists clients located in and around West Virginia including Morgantown, Fairmont, Clarksburg, Bridgeport, Kingwood, Grafton, Weston, Philippi, Buckhannon, Elkins, Parkersburg, as well as Monongalia, Marian, Harrison, Preston, Taylor, and Lewis county. If you or your loved ones have been injured in an accident and are looking for a no-risk initial consultation, contact an attorney at Colombo Law today.


by Colombo Law
Last updated on - Originally published on