It’s every parent’s worse nightmare. You’re driving along after the school pick-up or you’re heading home from visiting grandma and suddenly your car is shunted aggressively across the road. In the blink of an eye you’ve lost control, the children are screaming, and you come to a sudden stop. Shattered glass, the crunch of metal, your children crying – or even worse, are completely unconscious…it’s a nightmare of enormous proportions.
Whether you’ve been hit by a distracted driver or you’ve had a collision with a motorcycle, it’s important to know what to do in the worst-case scenario – can I sue someone personally after a motorcycle accident? Click the link to find out more.
No one wants to imagine being in a crash with their children, but by anticipating the worst and educating yourself on the scenario, you and your children have a better chance of walking away with the best possible outcome. Read on to find out what to do if you’re in a car crash with your children.
Understandably, your emotions are going to be all over the place. But you must remain calm so you can act swiftly, keep the situation calm and not distress your children further. If your children see that you’re screaming and frightened, they’re going to mimic your behaviour.
Check your children
Are they conscious? Screaming? What injuries can you see? Use your common sense here. If the car is filling with water or you’re turned over and your child is sitting in a puddle, removing them from their seat. If they’re injured, can’t feel an area of their body, complaining of neck, back or leg pains then keep them in their seat – assuming they’re not in any immediate danger.
Call the emergency services
You need to call the ambulance service, even if there are no obvious injuries, you can’t risk your child’s health. Many car crash injuries – such as soft tissue injuries, head injuries, whiplash etc may not manifest until much later. So seek medical attention asap. Call the police so they can secure the scene, speak with you and other drivers, and conduct a police report which will be useful should you pursue a personal injury case.
Bonus – It’s difficult but you should also try and get as much information from the other driver involved as well as photographs of the scene for evidence.
Monitor your child
As mentioned above, some injuries may take some time to manifest after a crash. So after being discharged from hospital you should continue to monitor your child for the next few days. Be wary of the signs that something may be wrong – such as a head or internal injury.
- Bleeding from ears, mouth or nose
- Constant and inconsolable crying (specifically in infants)
- Vision problems
- Strange breathing
- Loss of consciousness
Bonus – As a parent, always trust your instincts. If something doesn’t seem right, take your child to the emergency room straight away.
And finally, consider taking action
If you or your child have been injured in a crash, speak with a personal injury lawyer.