If you see a car accident, you’re not legally required to stop and help, but you may want to. However, some people worry about stopping and helping others because they don’t want to get sued if something goes awry. Fortunately, Utah has good samaritan laws in place to protect you if you choose to help a car accident victim, but accidentally cause harm.
Continue reading to learn more about how you can help other drivers involved in accidents.
Is It a Good Idea to Help Drivers Involved in Crashes?
You’re not legally required to stay at the scene of an accident if you merely witnessed it, but it’s the right thing to do. The parties involved might need support from a witness in the future. Furthermore, one of the victims may be too injured to dial 9-1-1, and if you’re the only witness and you leave, they might be in trouble.
Discover more information about the Good Samaritan Law.
Information on Utah’s Good Samaritan Law
The Utah Code (78B-4-501) states the following:
“A person who renders emergency care at or near the scene of, or during, an emergency, gratuitously and in good faith, is not liable for any civil damages or penalties as a result of any act or omission by the person rendering the emergency care unless the person is grossly negligent or caused the emergency.”
In layman’s terms, this law means that if you’re at the scene of an emergency and you attempt to help those involved, they can’t sue you. You’re probably wondering why a person you’re trying to help would sue you. In some instances, victims have ended up with further injuries when someone tries to help them, or their cars become more damaged.
Although these situations are unfortunate, a victim won’t be able to sue a person with good intentions, thanks to the Good Samaritan Law.
What Can I Do to Help at the Scene of the Car Accident?
If you decide to be a good samaritan, here are ways you can help:
- Dial 9-1-1 and let the operator know about the accident. Be as specific as possible. Include the location of the incident and describe the appearances of the cars involved.
- Check on the victims. Ask if they’re hurt and need medical assistance. Let the operator know if there are present injuries.
- Avoid moving seriously injured individuals, as movement may worsen their injuries.
- Cooperate with authorities who arrive at the scene. Let them know about everything you witnessed.
- Carefully remove dangerous items, such as exposed electric cables, away from the victims.
Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton is Here for You
If you’re ever involved in a car accident, you will probably want a good samaritan to assist you. Additionally, you should work with an experienced personal injury attorney from Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton, who can help you receive damages. You might be eligible for compensation if a negligent driver caused the accident.
We provide tailored legal solutions for a variety of case types.
We have offices throughout Utah County, as well as West Jordan. Schedule your free case evaluation today.