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Steps to Take After an Accident with a Garbage Truck in Texas

Steps to Take After an Accident with a Garbage Truck in Texas

Most newsworthy trucking accidents involve tractor-trailers that have jackknifed, rolled over, or caused a pileup on a major highway. People don’t tend to associate garbage trucks with serious traffic accidents, but they contribute to tragic accidents and severe injuries all across the country. In fact, the U.S. Department of Transportation reported that garbage trucks were involved in 1,427 injury crashes and 2,430 towaway crashes in 2017.

What to Do After a Garbage Truck Collision in Texas

Garbage trucks are vital for maintaining sanitary living conditions across the nation. Unfortunately, their commonness and sheer size make accidents with other vehicles inevitable.

The average passenger vehicle clocks in at around just 3,000 pounds. Garbage trucks, on the other hand, weigh about 51,000 pounds when full–an entire 17 times the weight of your everyday car. This drastic difference in weight can lead to catastrophic consequences. If you have been in a crash that involved a garbage truck, there are a few tasks you will need to complete.

After suffering from a garbage truck accident, you should follow these steps:

  • Seek medical attention. Even if you feel like your injuries are minor, it’s always better to be checked out by a medical professional. Adrenaline can leave you feeling like you’re okay, only to leave you writhing in pain days after the accident.
  • Call the police. Not only is filing an official police report after a motor vehicle accident a Texas state law, but it will also grant you the opportunity to officially document your statement and details of the accident.
  • Obtain witness information. Try to get the names, phone numbers, and addresses of everyone at the scene–including first responders. Taking down the names and badge numbers of any police officers who report to the scene could help you out in the long run.
  • Document the accident scene. Take photos and/or videos of the vehicles involved, any damages or injuries, and the surrounding area. The more pictures you can take, the better. The scene of an accident is not the place to be concerned with your phone’s storage.
  • Report the accident to your insurance company. Call your insurance provider and let them know what happened. Avoid going into any details about fault or speaking with the other party’s insurance company until after you’ve spoken with your attorney.
  • Speak with a truck accident attorney. Garbage truck accidents are complex and can involve many different parties, including the driver, their employer, the truck company, the city, and/or any insurance providers. While nobody is guaranteed a settlement or court award, working with an experienced truck accident attorney will give you the best chance of resolving your claim favorably.
  • Keep records of any expenses incurred. Detailed records of any medical treatments, lost wages, doctor visits, and any other costs associated with the accident will need to be kept in a safe place.

Crashes that involve garbage trucks can have grim outcomes. Always practice defensive driving skills when out on the road to minimize your risk of being involved in an accident. Defensive driving safety courses can be taken with the Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation.