Torque Tips | What do to when you witness a vehicle accident?

What do to when you witness a vehicle accident?

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-be on the look-out-

Accidents are a traumatic experience and witnessing one can be just as frightening. Today we are going to provide you with some tips on how to navigate through this horrible experience and how you can help in the situation.

As cliché as it sounds- stay calm, you can’t think rationally, and so benefit the situation, if you are panicky. Take a deep breath and think rationally about what to do. Firstly, call emergency services and explain to them exactly what you see (so that they know what to expect and can equip themselves accordingly) and give them a detailed explanation of your location so that they can easily find you. If you have a GPS, provide emergency services with your GPS location.

Keep a safe distance - Remember, no matter how much you would like to help at the moment, the ultimate goal is always safety- the safety of the people in the accident as well yours. This is why we advise that you remain a safe distance from the crash, put on your hazards and inspect the area first to keep yourself from glass, smoke, flames and fumes.

If you have determined it is safe to intervene, you may proceed to help. Find out how many people were in each vehicle and if everyone is still there. It is a common occurrence for a person to be catapulted in an accident nearby and you could help them by finding them quicker so that emergency services don’t have to. The next tip is very important- don’t ever move an injured person from an accident! If their spine has been damaged, they can be paralyzed so it?s best to leave that to the professionals and rather focus on keeping them calm.

Put up signs like flares or an emergency triangle in the road to warn other road users of what?s ahead. If the accident was not that serious, firstly switch off the vehicle to avoid a fire and if possible, safely move the vehicle out of the way to make way for other vehicles and emergency services.

In the case of a hit and run, you must recall as much detail as possible and write it down while it is still fresh in your mind. When giving a statement- be as detailed and accurate in your experiences as possible. Remember, everything you say must be factual and you should not give a report on any speculation. Rather advise the police officer when you are unsure about something and don’t forget to provide them with your contact info in case they need to get back to you.

Vehicle accidents happen daily and a lot of them are quite severe, therefore we should always try to minimize damage and injury. We hope that this Torque Tip will assist you if you ever witness an accident.

Written by: Nita Stadler