What Are My Responsibilities as a Witness to a Car Crash in Mississippi?
One moment, you’re minding your own business and going about your day. The next thing you know, you see a car accident happen right in front of you. You had a clear view of the incident and stuck around to ensure everyone was okay.
After all of that, as a witness to the accident, you’re probably wondering – “if you witness a car accident do you have to go to court?” The answer to the question is, “it depends.” Simply being a witness doesn’t mean you automatically have to go to court, but you may be contacted by a lawyer from our firm to talk about what you saw.
At Blackmon & Blackmon PLLC, we speak to witnesses to determine if they have information that could be used in court. As a witness, you’ll speak with a Mississippi car accident lawyer, but you may not get called to testify in court. Here’s more information about being a witness to a car accident.
Who Can Be a Witness to a Car Crash?
Anyone can be a witness to a car crash outside of those who were involved in the accident. You simply have to be in a position to view the accident as it occurred in order to witness a car accident. It’s what you do next that can influence your value as a witness for the people involved in the crash.
Your Responsibilities as a Witness to a Car Crash
There is no legal obligation to identify yourself as a witness of a car accident, but you may wish to help the people that were involved in the crash. Here’s what to do if you see a car accident:
Stop your car in a safe place
You won’t ruin evidence by moving your car and parking it out of the way of traffic. The only time you should leave your car in place is if you are blocked in by accident and can’t move it otherwise.
Take a moment and call 911 before you do anything further. The sooner emergency services can reach the scene, the sooner they can provide medical assistance and transport people to the hospital for help. Don’t hold off and assume that other drivers will call, as 911 services are designed to handle an influx of calls for the same accident.
Check your surroundings before getting out of your car
Chances are good that you’re in a bit of shock yourself after witnessing the car accident. You may not be injured, but witnessing a sudden collision can disrupt your senses as they try to process what just happened.
Make sure it’s safe to get out of your car if you’re stuck by the accident or if you pull over to the side to offer assistance. You don’t want to cause a second accident.
Check on the accident victims
Approach the accident scene carefully and look for victims of the crash in their cars first. Talk to them and wait for a response to determine if they’re conscious, but don’t encourage them to get out of the car unless there’s a fire risk. If someone seems to be going in and out of consciousness, talk to them consistently and keep them as alert as possible to prevent them from entering a state of shock.
Turn off the vehicles
In the event that the people involved in the collision are able to move, have them put their cars in the park and turn them off to minimize the risk of fire. If it’s possible to move the cars, do so only if it’s safe. Otherwise, wait for first responders to get to the scene and take care of the vehicles.
Leave your contact information
You can leave your contact information with the police officer that responds to the accident. The officer may contact you later if they need more information, but you may also be contacted by a lawyer for the accident victims later on.
Get in Touch with a Car Crash Attorney
At Blackmon & Blackmon PLLC, our law firm can help protect your rights after you’ve been involved in a car accident. Call us today to speak to a Canton car accident lawyer from our firm to learn more about getting just compensation after a car accident. We can help you process a compensation claim and handle all the details of the case on your behalf so you can recover and move forward with your life.