Most responsible drivers recognize that when an accident occurs, there are certain steps to take to ensure that the situation is handled appropriately. If you find yourself involved in an accident involving the negligence of SEPTA, Philadelphia’s public transit authority, knowing what to do and what not to do plays a critical role in protecting your rights. If an accident occurs, keep the following in mind when facing the aftermath:
Do not leave the scene
When an accident occurs, the authorities and an ambulance should be notified right away. Remain at the scene until help comes. This will play a part in proving that you were present at the time of the accident. Shock and confusion can sometimes cause people to make choices that could later hinder their entitlement to any compensation. Try to remain calm and wait for the authorities.
Do not rely on the driver to report the details of the accident
All SEPTA drivers should have an incident card to give you in the event of an accident. This card will allow you to detail the accident from your point of view. If the driver fails to mention the card, request one. The card will be in duplicate. Make sure you give a copy to the driver, and make especially sure that you keep your copy in a safe place. Sometimes,this is the only proof that you were involved in the accident. In addition to the incident card:
Take photos of the vehicles, location, and damages
Write down identifying information regarding the SEPTA vehicle and driver
Obtain names and phone numbers of potential witnesses
Do not delay treatment for an injury
If you sustained injuries in the SEPTA accident, you will need prompt medical attention. Do not delay this process. Postponing medical treatment could be detrimental to your physical health and affect your overall recovery. Medical reports will also support your description of the accident and any injuries you experienced. These documents will be instrumental in demonstrating that you deserve compensation.
Do not speak to SEPTA attorneys
If a SEPTA employee or legal representative tries to discuss the details of the accident with you or solicit an admission of guilt, you are under no legal obligation to speak with them. In fact, obtaining your own legal representation is critical, as it will provide you with the protection you need to ensure that your rights are not violated. The skill of an experienced lawyer that is well versed in personal injury law will be key to negotiating compensation for the injuries caused in the accident, particularly when dealing with SEPTA’s insurance and legal representatives.
If you have been injured in an accident involving SEPTA, contact me, Jeffrey H. Penneys, Esq., for a consultation regarding your claim. I am prepared to handle the legal complexities for you so you can focus on your recovery rather than the accumulating financial loss. I believe in taking every claim seriously and fighting for what is important: your rights. Call today or fill out the online contact form and I will be in touch within 24 hours.