While it is usually a driver’s first instinct to get out of their vehicle after engaging in an accident with a car or truck, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) suggests that it may not always be a good idea to do so.

 

Back in September 2019, the CHP received a call at around 4:06 a.m. regarding an accident that had happened on the westbound side of I-580 just east of Lakeshore Avenue [Source: KPIX5]. Three vehicles had been involved in the collision and one person died. Sgt. Alex Edmon with CHP said that a driver of a Mercedes had lost control of their vehicle which resulted in them spinning out of control on I-580.

There had been heavy rainfall at the time which means the roadways were pretty wet. After the driver of the Mercedes lost control of their car, they collided with a pickup truck. Both of the drivers then got out of their vehicles perhaps to see how much damage was done. As the operator of the pickup truck, who was later identified as 35-year-old Daniel Contreras, walked around his vehicle to the passenger side, he was struck by a Honda Sedan. The impact “hurled the driver’s body into the eastbound lanes” (the accident initially occurred on the westbound side of I-580) resulting in him suffering fatal injuries.

After the fatal accident occurred, Sgt. Alex Edmon shared some suggestions with KPIX5 regarding what you should do after engaging in an accident in Oakland, CA.

 

Here’s what he had to say.

  1. If you are involved in an accident, you should make it a priority to “drive to either the right-hand shoulder or the center median.” Edmon said that “regardless of the amount of damage, you can still make that attempt and your vehicle will probably still move.” It is especially important to get your vehicle off the road when it is dark or inclement weather is present as the two contribute to making it increasingly difficult for other motorists to see you.
  2. If you are unable to move your vehicle out of the freeway lanes or out of the way of oncoming traffic, Edmon recommends that you remain in your vehicle with your seatbelt on until the police arrive and secure the scene. When you get out of your vehicle, you heighten your chances of being struck by a negligent or distracted driver who isn’t paying attention to the road.
  3. CHP also mentioned that “cars approaching may not be able to stop in time and even standing behind your disabled vehicle may not be enough protection to save your life.” Therefore, staying inside your vehicle might be a safer option until local law enforcement arrives at the scene.

Aside from taking the necessary measures to keep yourself safe after a truck accident, it is also recommended that you contact an Oakland, CA truck accident lawyer to find out what your next steps should be. If you suffered injuries and would like to know how much you might be entitled to collect for them, contact USAttorneys.com and let us help you find a qualified Oakland, CA truck accident attorney in your area who can provide you with this information.