by Lauryn Chavez| staff writer
It was a typical trip home after school that taught junior Victoria Franco a lifelong lesson. As more high schoolers get on the road they need to know what to do if they get into car accidents and what to anticipate. Students need to know how to handle this so they don’t put other people at risk as well as themselves. Driving comes with freedom, but it also comes with many potential risks.
“You know that intersection by McDonalds and Whataburger? They don’t have stop signs there or any yield signs. When we were driving down that road to the house and, we had the right of way, she went (other driver) and we t-boned her,” Franco said.
There are at least 3,000 people that pass away due to car accidents per year just in Texas. Most times the other driver is at fault for the accident that happens, and that’s exactly what happened to Victoria. In Franco’s accident they had the right away and they weren’t expecting another driver to come across her. “I wasn’t wearing my seatbelt … I had lacerations on my intestines and colon. It took a while, it’s painful. They should expect that for sure it doesn’t come without bruises because even my sisters, who were sitting up front, I was in the back, but I still got the most damage,” Franco said.
Victoria suffered from injuries because she was wearing her seatbelt incorrectly.
“It was actually pretty fast (arrival time of police). They came in about 5 to 10 minutes. And the paramedics said I was fine because all of it was internal things,” Franco said.
Victoria eventually had to get checked out at a hospital to make sure everything was alright.
“I couldn’t walk for a little bit because I was sore. They try to get you moving and stuff like that, and I swear I saw another dude from the school that also got into a car accident. He broke his leg in half right here (middle of shin) you could hear him yelling, the nurse was like ‘bring your knee up’ and he was like ‘I don’t need to!’ It’s horrific and at the same time it’s so surreal,” Franco said.
Students often are unaware of what to do in an accident situation.
“Well the first thing, of course, is to make sure everyone is okay and get to a safer area. If the cars are drivable, pull over If you were hit by somebody, try to get the other drivers, at least their license plate number.in case they, you know, hit and run,” says State Farm Insurance agent Tammy Sprayberry.
An exchange of information is important when accidents occur.
“Always get that insurance information, their name, and a good phone number for them. You might want to ask them if that’s the right address on their license. You want to make sure everyone gets the right information…People don’t need to worry as much about calling their insurance right there from the scene, they can always turn in the claim when they’re in a better location or when things have calmed down a bit or when they even have all of the information,” said SprayBerry.
There are ways to prevent an accident from occurring.
“Always be on the lookout for the other people. You might be a good driver yourself, but of course watch your speed and don’t make turns and accelerate quickly when you’re making turns. Just using all your drivers ed basics. Always expect the unexpected,” said SprayBerry.