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Home » What to do After an Accident
February 6, 2024

What to do After an Accident

Commercial truck drivers are responsible for driving large and heavy vehicles on public roads. They carry a great responsibility to safely operate their vehicles as they navigate the nation’s highways. As careful as you may be, many factors can play into an unforeseen accident. Weather, road conditions, and other drivers can all be factors. Unfortunately, accidents involving transport trucks can carry more severe consequences because of the sheer size of a tractor-trailer.


In the event of an accident, it is important that you know how to respond to protect yourself, others involved in the accident, and any cargo you may be carrying.


Safety First

The first step commercial truck drivers should take after being involved in an accident is to ensure their safety. If possible, move away from traffic or safely away from the scene of the accident before calling 911 for help.


Make sure you remain calm during this process as panicking can hinder your ability to make sound decisions about what needs to be done next. Once you’ve taken care of yourself by ensuring your safety, it is important to check on the well-being of anyone else involved in the accident. If possible, assess any injuries and provide first aid if necessary and if it is safe to do so. Once you’ve determined the need for emergency services, place the call to 911 and wait for officials to arrive.


Policies and Procedures

Commercial truck drivers should be familiar with their company’s truck accident policies and procedures as these can vary between companies. Knowing how your employer wants you to respond to such situations can help reduce stress and ensure all necessary steps are taken quickly and efficiently. No matter the specific policy requirements, contact your company and advise them of the situation – they will want to know.


Document the Scene

Drivers should take photographs or video of the scene to create a digital and visual record.  Photos and videos of what happened before emergency personnel arrive can be used later when filing an incident report with the police or insurance companies. Photos or videos should include the involved vehicles, license plates, as well as specific damages to vehicles and trailers and the immediate area if applicable. If possible, it’s also a good idea to get contact information from any witnesses who may have seen what happened so that they can be contacted later if needed.


Emergency and Environmental Response

Once emergency services arrive at the scene, commercial truck drivers should be prepared to provide information about themselves, their vehicle, the company, and the freight. This is to determine if additional services are required such as environmental clean-up in the event of substance leakages. If leaks or spills have occurred, whether diesel fuel or a chemical leak from a tanker, the clean-up will take substantially longer than a mere vehicle collision.



Many companies require dashcams in their company vehicles, while other drivers have them for their protection in the aftermath of a collision. The video footage captured by a dashcam can help determine the cause of the accident and who was at fault. If you are involved in an accident and you have a dashcam, it is vital to keep the footage as it may be needed later for insurance or legal purposes. Keep in mind that if you choose to share the dashcam footage with the police or your insurance company, you should make sure that the footage is not tampered with in any way. Deleting or altering the footage in any way could be considered tampering with evidence and could be used against you. It is also a good idea to keep a copy of the dashcam footage for your records, in case it is needed later.

Overall, being involved in an accident is a stressful event for any commercial truck driver. It is important to remain calm while taking the necessary steps to protect yourself, others involved in the accident, and any cargo you may be carrying. By following these steps, you can help ensure that everyone remains safe and that all information needed for post-accident paperwork is readily available.

Categories: Truck Insurance, Trucker Tips

Tags: accident, bad weather, hurricane, insurance, rain, snow, snow storm, storm, tips, truck driver, trucking

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