Seeing a wreck is a very stressful event. However, many people don’t stop to help out because they’re afraid they’ll get in trouble if they do something wrong.  Luckily, North Carolina has a “Good Samaritan” law. This law protects you if you stop to render first-aid to someone and hurt further them, unless you intentionally hurt the person or do something reckless, which is called “wanton conduct.” Some tips to keep in mind are:

  1. Pull safely off the highway, putting at least half a football field between your car and the wreck;
  2. BE SAFE:assess the situation and act as carefully as you can, as you don’t want to add yourself to the victim list;
  3. Contact 911 and let them know where you are, how many vehicles are involved, and the extent of any injuries you can determine;
  4. Call back to 911 if things become worse than when you first arrived (a vehicle suddenly catches fire, a victim losses consciousness, etc.);
  5. Don’t move any vehicles;
  6. Don’t move any victims unless they are in worse potential danger (laying in the road, near a chemical or gasoline spill, etc.);
  7. Try to keep everyone calm until police, fire, and or EMS can arrive to take charge of the scene;
  8. If any responders arrive, and if you are certified in First Aid, tell them, “I am trained and certified in First Aid.  Can I help further?” and let them decide what you can do and how

Remember that the Good Samaritan law protects you if you re-injure the person who was already hurt. If you knock someone down who’s a bystander, or hit another car that wasn’t involved in the wreck, then you are not protected from a claim by THAT person. Insurance companies often try to misuse Good Samaritan laws in an effort to avoid responsibility, so be careful if they mention it. Our lawyers know what does and does not qualify for Good Samaritan protection.

If you’ve been involved in a car wreck or think you may have a personal injury claim, contact us today for a free consultation.  We’re the Miller Law Group, and we’ve got your back.

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