Car accidents happen all the time. There are over 3,000 crashes per day, but knowing that does not make it any easier when you are involved in one yourself. If you are in an accident, it may be wise to follow these steps.
When someone hits you unexpectedly, it is natural to lose control of your emotions, because you likely are feeling many. It is beneficial to stay as calm as you can after an accident so that you can follow the next steps.
Check for injury
Car accidents have a high rate of injury. Look yourself over for any injury, even something minor. If you find yourself injured, it is important to go to the doctor or hospital for treatment. Even if you find no injury right away, keep watch of yourself (or have someone you know watch you) over the next few days, as certain injuries can appear after the accident, such as whiplash, a concussion or internal injuries.
Document the crash and damage
You may want to write down your recollection of the accident as it can be hard to remember specific details even hours after the incident. Also, taking pictures of the damage to your vehicle and the other driver’s vehicle can be helpful in determining liability with your insurance or legal counsel.
Even if it is not an emergent situation, calling the police to the scene can be helpful. They will assess the situation, take statements and likely create a police report. When discussing with insurance, it can be beneficial to have a police report on file.
Assuming that the other driver stayed at the scene, it is wise to get information from them, including name, phone number, license plate number and insurance information. This will be helpful later on when making a claim.
Talk to insurance or a lawyer
After the accident, you may want to either call your insurance or call a lawyer. Both can be helpful tools in recovering damages from an accident and helping you get back to your everyday life.