Although no one wants to be involved in one, accidents involving vehicles happen continuously and on a daily basis in the United States. If you drive, you run the risk of being involved in an accident, even if you take all of the necessary precautions, and follow every traffic rule diligently. It’s extremely important to be prepared, just in case, by learning the proper steps to take immediately after a collision or accident.
The first step to take is to make sure that you stay at the scene of the accident until law enforcement arrives and makes an official report. Even though it may seem as if you’ve only had a slight fender bender, and there was no damage done, you still need to stay until law enforcement arrives. If you happen to leave beforehand, no matter how minor the incident may seem, you could potentially set yourself up for a criminal charge, such as a “Hit and Run.” However, you should make exception to this rule if you have an accident in an isolated area or in any area where you feel unsafe. In instances such as these, call the police, and drive to the nearest public place. If your car is unable to start, stay inside your vehicle, and call the police. Keep in mind that it’s highly recommended to always a keep a cell phone with you.
The second step to take is to make sure that you and the other parties involved are not injured. If you spot any injuries, immediately call for medical help. Even if you feel fine after the wreck and don’t feel as if you need immediate medical assistance, visit your physician or a medical facility as soon as possible. If you happen to have neck and head pains, experience dizziness, or any other discomfort a few weeks after the accident, it will only make it more difficult to prove that your ailments were caused by the wreck if you did not seek medical assistance as soon as possible.
If possible, the third step would be to take pictures of the accident. Pictures can be a crucial part of winning an accident claim, should it escalate.
Next, do not admit any fault to the other parties. Simply give your name and insurance information to the police, but do not say that you know that you were at fault. Giving out this bit of information, whether you may believe you are at fault or not, could backfire on you at a later date.
After you’ve spoken to the police and gotten a written report, try to gather information from the other party, in case your insurance company needs to contact them. If possible, try to get insurance details along with contact information. Pass this information along to your insurance company when you call to inform them about the accident. Make sure you do call your insurance company as soon as possible so that they can gather any additional details that may be needed. There is a good chance that your insurance will be made aware of the incident shortly after it happened, so be certain to be honest.
A car accident lawyer knows and understands the ins-and-outs in regards to car collisions and liability laws.