What To Do When You Witness A Car Accident In Kentucky

Don’t flee the scene
According to the Courier-Journal, a Louisville Metro Police officer was arrested and charged with driving under the influence and leaving the scene of the accident. The police officer, James Hemmer, had been in service since February 1999. He is now on administrative reassignment, and his police powers were suspended.

What to do if you witness an accident
Leaving the scene of an accident, especially when you’re one of the ones involved, has consequences. However, what if you’re just passing by and happen to witness an accident. Should you continue driving? Should you pull over and see if anyone needs your help?

Related: What To Do When Helping Car Accident Victims at the Crash Scene

If you want to help an accident victim, here are some tips you should follow:

  • You may pull over. However, you need to make sure that you are a safe distance away from the accident. You will also want to park your car in a safe area where cars won’t hit you.
  • Turn your emergency flashers on so you let oncoming traffic know that there’s an accident ahead.
  • Call 9-1-1.
  • It’s okay to approach the accident scene to see if anyone is injured. However, you still need to keep a safe distance from the vehicles involved. You can take notes of the accident scene and report them to the police. This way, emergency respondents can find the accident location easier and know in advance the number of people that might need help. Also, Kentucky has a Good Samaritan Law that is designed to protect individuals, who in good faith have provided assistance to victims from any liability.

Related: Why Gather Witness Information at the Scene of an Accident

As a Kentucky Accident Attorney, I recommend that you contact the authorities first if you witness an accident. You may then take notes of the accident scene until police arrive. However, don't move or touch anything. Everything at the accident scene could be used as evidence later. It’s against the law to tamper with evidence. However, we should do what we can to help the victims of a vehicle accident if we can safely do so.

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