As a truck driver, you’ll need to know precisely how to deal with a semi-truck accident if one happens.

While it’s essential to know how to avoid accidents in the first place, accidents still happen all the time. Nearly 388,000 truck accidents happen annually across the U.S.

If you can’t prevent the accident from taking place, the best thing you can do is to deal with the accident as efficiently as possible. Each accident is different and will come with its challenges. However, the same general process can be followed after an accident occurs.

Here are the steps you should follow if you’ve experienced a semi-truck accident.

What to Do in an Accident With Semi Truck: Steps to Follow

Check for Injuries

First and foremost, check yourself and others involved for any injuries. While there’s much to consider during a truck accident, safety should always be your priority.

If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately to request immediate medical attention. Even minor injuries should be reported, as a complete medical evaluation may reveal the injuries to be more severe than suspected.

Identifying possible injuries will also help you understand how best to deal with the truck accident in terms of moving vehicles and clearing up any wreckage.

Once emergency services have been notified about any injuries, you can move on to dealing with the semi-truck accident.

call law enforcement
Move to Safety

If possible, move your vehicle to the side of the road or a safe location to avoid further accidents. Turn on hazard lights to alert other drivers.

This isn’t possible for some truck accidents, and it’s not a good idea to try to move any vehicles if they’re in hazardous situations. However, if your vehicle is alright and you can clear the road without causing any harm, then try to do this.

Before moving the vehicle, though, you’ll want to take pictures of the car accident. This is important for the truck accident investigation – more on this later.

Call Law Enforcement

Once the scene is as safe as possible, the next step is to alert the authorities about the truck accident.

Contact the police to report the accident, even if it’s minor. Having an official report can be valuable for insurance claims and legal purposes. If you’re a truck driver who crosses state boundaries, it’s wise to know which local law enforcement numbers to call for each state you travel through.

Exchange Information

You’ll need information to contact the other driver’s insurance company. Make sure you exchange this information before departing the scene of the accident.

Exchange contact, insurance, and driver’s license information with the other driver. Include their company name, contact number, and any relevant details. Semi-truck accidents can sometimes be tricky to report and follow through with insurance, but having the other driver’s contact details will help the process.

Gather Evidence

An essential part of dealing with a semi-truck accident is gathering enough evidence to report the accident to your insurance company.

If it’s safe to do so, take photos of the accident scene, the positions of the vehicles, any damage sustained, and road or weather conditions. Taking videos with your mobile phone will also be useful.
The more detailed your documentation is, the better, as this will all help make the insurance claims process go faster. So, take your time carefully documenting the scene of the accident.

Obtain Witnesses

If there were any witnesses to the accident, ask them for their contact information. Their statements can provide valuable support for your case.

While this isn’t always possible or necessary, having an extra witness statement is always helpful to help with any legal claims or police reports.

Limit Communication

While exchanging information with the involved parties is essential, avoid discussing fault or assigning blame at the scene. Stick to the facts when talking to the police, other drivers, and witnesses.

Always try to keep a cool head and focus purely on the accident and how best to deal with it. While your emotional condition can be difficult after a semi-truck accident, staying calm and collected will make the process easier to manage.

Contact Your Insurance Company

As soon as you’ve dealt with the accident, notify your insurance company about what happened. They will guide you on the necessary steps for filing a claim and getting compensation.

Having reliable insurance is one of the most essential parts of starting a trucking company. Once you’ve found the right commercial truck insurance provider, ensure you know how to reach them in an emergency.

Seek Medical Attention

Even if you don’t feel seriously injured, seeking medical attention after an accident is always advisable. Some injuries might not be immediately apparent and could become more significant as time passes.

Avoid Settlement Agreements

While this differs from case to case, it’s generally best to avoid settlement agreements immediately.

Do not sign any settlement agreements or release forms from the trucking company or their insurance representatives without consulting your legal counsel. Make sure you deal with a lawyer when going through settlement negotiations. This will help you get the best deal and compensation for your situation.

You must consult an attorney if the accident resulted in significant injuries, damages, or disputes. Try to consult with a personal injury attorney specializing in commercial vehicle accidents. They often offer a free consultation – so make use of these.


Semi-truck accidents may be the last thing you’ll ever want to deal with. However, they sometimes cannot be avoided.

Knowing how to deal with these accidents will help you get through the accident faster and safer. Following the proper steps will also make it easier to get an appropriate settlement after the accident.

If you need to purchase a new semi-truck, you may need to find the right financing solution to make it happen. Get in touch with us at Mission Financial Services, where we help all kinds of commercial truck drivers access the financing they need to purchase a semi-truck.

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