What to Do if You’re Injured on Vacation

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 By Edgar Snyder, Esq.

As a healthcare worker, you and your colleagues may witness injuries from all types of accidents. Many people go on vacation during the summer. Injuries during vacation aren’t fun, but trips to the ER happen more often than you may think.

The best thing you can do is follow the proper safety tips to avoid these injuries, know what to do if you’re injured while on vacation, and act quickly to protect your legal rights.

Out-of-State Car Accidents

Summer vacations often involve travelling long distances by car. That means there’s always a chance that you may be in a car accident. Being injured in an out-of-state accident makes an already stressful situation even more difficult.

You need to follow the laws of the state where the car accident occurred, but your Pennsylvania auto insurance policy will almost always determine your rights. If you’re injured in an accident, your first-party medical benefits should cover your medical bills. However, out-of-state accident cases aren’t cut and dry – each state has its own set of conditions that could affect your claim. In rare instances, you may have expanded benefits available under the state law where the accident occurred. If you’re seriously injured, consider contacting a Pennsylvania attorney to protect your legal rights.

Also, if you have a boat, ATV, or motorcycle, make sure you have insurance policies covering them. If you have questions about how your insurance policy applies when you’re out of state, ask your insurance agent.

Vacation Safety Tips

There are countless ways to help prevent injuries while on vacation. Several tips include links to learn more about accident prevention:

  • Know the laws that apply to your vacation spot – including traffic laws, seat belt lawsdog bite and leash lawsmotorcycle helmet laws, etc. Not only will it help you prevent accidents and injuries, but it also will help protect your legal rights if an accident happens despite your best efforts to stay safe.
  • Never drive drunk. Hundreds of thousands of people travel for summer vacations and over holiday weekends in the summer. Watch out for other drivers who appear intoxicated, and never serve alcohol to those under 21.
  • If you plan on spending time near a pool or body of water, never allow kids to swim alone. Never dive into shallow water or run near a pool. Swimming pool safety is a must.
  • You may cook out while you’re camping or at the beach. Follow these food safety guidelines.

What to Do if You’re Injured in an Accident

  1. Seek medical attention for you or anyone injured in an accident. As a healthcare worker, you understand that it could save your life, prevent permanent damage, or reduce the severity of your injuries.
  2. Report the accident. If you’re in a motor vehicle accident, report it to the police and file a report. It will help protect your rights and keep anyone else involved from filing an unsubstantiated claim against you. If you slipped and fell while on vacation, file an incident report with management and ask for a copy of the report.
  3. Gather evidence. Evidence varies based on the type of accident, but generally you should take photos of injuries and anything pertaining to the accident that could “prove” who was responsible or help protect your legal rights.
  4. Collect information from other parties involved in the accident, as well as witnesses. If your accident was an auto collision, be sure to get their name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, VIN, license plate number, and insurance carrier.
  5. Be cautious with insurance companies. It’s the insurance company’s job to offer you as little as possible. Never give a recorded statement to the other person’s insurance company or your own, and never accept a settlement unless you’re sure it’s fair. Be careful what you say and sign.

Summer vacations are supposed to be fun, but they’re not always accident-free. Even healthcare workers need to keep safety a top priority. It’s also good to know the laws where you plan to travel. Visit this link for state-by-state laws.

Attorney Edgar Snyder has served the residents of western Pennsylvania and its surrounding regions for over 45 years. His law firm, Edgar Snyder & Associates, has represented over 40,000 people, including clients who were injured in all types of accidents. For more information, visit EdgarSnyder.com.