The world is cautiously emerging from the stay-at-home orders imposed on more than 50% of the world’s population while they hunkered down, self-isolating, waiting for the virus to burn itself out. The rest of the world is watching countries who were first in the COVID-19 pandemic queue, like South Korea, China, New Zealand, and Australia, to see whether there will be a second wave and how they manage isolated flare ups in their country.
It is also safe to say that the world has irrevocably changed since the virus was first seen during the last days of 2019. For starters, without a vaccine, the virus will be with us for a long time. Therefore, social distancing as well as the wearing of face masks will also be around for an equal length of time. Conservative estimates indicate that it could take up to twelve to eighteen months to develop a successful vaccine that will protect the majority of the world’s population against the coronavirus.
Threading your way through the new normal: A case study
Therefore, the question that begs is, how do you navigate your way through the new normal, including going back to work in an office and needing to travel to work along public roads?
By way of answering this question, let’s consider a case study as retold by a Los Angeles car crash attorney.
As the United States opens up and more people start traveling on public roads to and from work, the risk of being caught in a road accident increases exponentially. In other words, the more time you spend traveling in your car, the greater the chance there is of being involved in an incident on the public roads.
Statistics show that over 38,000 people die annually in road accidents on US roads. And, 4.4 million people are seriously injured. Finally, the annual cost of the medical bills as a direct consequence of motor vehicle accidents is over $380 million.
Thus, let’s consider a quick scenario that describes what to do if you are involved in a car crash.
You are the only occupant of the car you are traveling in. And you are on your way to work when you are involved in a fender bender.
What do you do? Here are six steps to follow:
- Switch the car’s engine off when it comes to a halt. As an aside, it is a criminal offense to leave an accident scene or to move the cars before the traffic police have arrived.
- Check whether you are injured and are able to get out of the car. The new normal dictates that it is essential to wear a face mask in public. Therefore, make sure you are wearing your cloth face mask before you get out of the car.
- Once you are out of the car, phone 911 for assistance. It’s essential to get out of the car and to move away from the vehicle in case it catches on fire, or slides down an embankment, for example.
- While you wait for the traffic police and rescue team to arrive, swap contact details, driver’s license details, and other information from the other drivers as well as witnesses.
- Contact your insurance broker to organize a tow truck to remove your vehicle from the accident scene once the police give the go ahead.
- Even if you can walk away from the accident, it’s important to see medical advice because you might have an injury like whiplash.
It is a good idea to consult with a legal expert before filling out the insurance claim forms and to determine whether you can file a personal injury claim against the driver who caused the accident. It might be cheaper to submit the paperwork yourself; however, a specialist lawyer has the skill, experience, and knowledge to negotiate the best post-accident deal on your behalf.