Even careful drivers have car accidents. In fact, most people have been in one, and just being involved doesn’t mean that the occurrence was your fault. Regardless of the situation, however, there are specific things that you must make sure to do when you are involved in a car accident. In fact, it is absolutely essential that you remember to do these specific things while you are still at the scene.
First, check yourself and your fellow passengers for injuries. Second, contact local authorities and your insurer.
First, it is important to do the check of possible injuries on yourself. If you do have an injury, call 911 immediately, or ask someone nearby to call for you. In addition, if you have an injury, don’t move. Simply wait in your car or wherever you are for 911 services to arrive. Always check on yourself first, and when you feel fine, see about the well-being of your passengers.
If you have a passenger who is injured in your vehicle, call emergency services as well, or ask someone nearby to call for you. If you can drive your car, you can pull it off to the side of the road or to a place where it will be safe and out of the way. Once you do this, turn your car off, turn your hazard lights on and wait for emergency services to arrive. You might also check on the well-being of the passengers in the other car involved in the accident if you and your passengers are okay to do so, but only do this if you are okay to do so and if they need immediate help.
You’ll also want to call your insurance provider. Even if the accident is not severe or it wasn’t your fault, you should let your insurance provider know that it occurred.
Next, document exactly what happened in the accident as best as you can.
No matter the size of the accident, you’ll want to protect yourself by documenting exactly what happened. To do this, first get the names and badge numbers of all of the responding police officers. They may be helpful in offering their opinion, guidance or police reports. You’ll also want to get a copy of the police reports and accidents reports that were taken at the scene of the accident. If you have a camera or smart phone, take as many pictures as possible from all different angles so that you can see the damage and injuries at the scene. If there are witnesses nearby, get their personal information and accounts of what happened at the accident.
Finally, exchange important information with the other driver in the accident.
You’ll want to talk to the other driver and exchange information too. You will need their full name, phone number and address. You’ll also need their insurance company name and phone number and the individual’s policy number. You should get the license plate number and driver’s license number of the other car and driver. You should write down the make, model and color of the other vehicle involved.
Lastly, write down the exact location of the accident and anything else notable that you can see around you to tell your lawyer later. You’ll want to take some notes for yourself. For example, jot down any facts that you can remember about the accident and document whatever injuries you or your passengers experienced with pictures and notes.
Most people make the mistake of thinking that they will remember every detail from the accident when it’s days or weeks down the line, but this usually isn’t the case. It’s best to take several notes at the scene of the accident because this is when you will best remember what exactly happened. You should get notes from your passengers as well because they may have seen different things than you did.
If anyone in the accident was seriously injured, it’s important to contact your lawyer or another experienced attorney for help. By getting help from an experienced attorney, your recovery will be maximized if you have been seriously injured in the accident. But additionally, if you worry about being at fault for someone else’s injury, a lawyer can help defend you as well.