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Describing the duty to render aid in Texas

Should one randomly question a sampling of drivers regarding what they should do after being in a car accident in The Woodlands, most would likely state that they are obligated to remain at the scene. Yet while most believe this to be due to a need to share one's insurance and vehicle information with both authorities and other accident victims, one of the primary reasons behind requiring motorists involved in an accident to remain at the scene is to provide aid. 

Indeed, Section 550.023 of Texas' Transportation Code states that anyone involved in an accident that is physically able to is obligated to offer aid to accident victims. When people are injured in car accidents, every moment counts when it comes to providing them with treatment. Those at the scene are able to begin such treatment faster than any emergency responder can. 

The Texas Department of Transportation reports that there were 14,299 accidents involving serious injuries on the state's roads in 2017. That doesn't necessarily mean that there was an equal number of opportunities for able-bodied accident victims to offer aid to those injured. Rather, the law does not place any undue burden on those not qualified to provide emergency care. Rather, the expectation is that one provide any level of care that they are comfortable giving. in some cases, that may include: 

  • Calling 911 to seek assistance in giving care
  • Helping to move one away from the accident scene 
  • Transporting an accident victim to the nearest medical facility

Arranging that one be transported to a medical facility via an ambulance or private vehicle might also be the standard demanded by the state's duty to render aid. 

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