If you have been involved in a car accident, your adrenaline will shoot through the roof and you won’t be in a clear state of mind to think what to do next. However, it is important for you to stay calm as your reaction to the situation is going to have a huge impact on your financial life.
Follow these tips on how you should handle a car accident. These steps are focused on helping you avoid further injuries as well as protect your legal rights and making sure that your auto insurance claim is processed smoothly.
#1 Stay Focused
The most important things you need to do when you are involved in any kind of accident is to stay calm. If you spin out of control, you won’t be able to help yourself or others as you won’t be thinking clearly.
Even if it is a mistake of the other driver and you want to get it all out, just stop. Losing your cool is not going to help things and is going to work against you even when you’re not at fault. So, whenever you are involved in an accident, begin by taking a deep breath. Make sure your car is brought to a complete stop and don’t forget to turn it off. In case you are on an incline, don’t forget to use the emergency brake.
#2 Take Care of Others
Check if someone needs medical care and if they do, immediately call an ambulance. In case you have suffered any kind of injury, you should stay in the vehicle and call for help. If you’re feeling okay, check others for injuries and if needed, call an ambulance. If someone is severely hurt, you should never try to move them on your own as that might exacerbate their injuries.
#3 Take Photos
Take photographs at the accident scene from as many angles as possible. If you have a disposable camera, use that or use the camera on your phone or your insurance company’s app to submit the photos as well as other information. Make sure the damage is accurately captured from all the angles. In addition, capture photos of broken glass, skid marks as well as debris on the ground.
#4 Get Your Vehicle Out Of the Way
In case no one is hurt in the accident and the accident is minor, make sure your vehicle is not in the way of traffic. If you are unable to move your vehicle, don’t forget to turn on the hazard lights. If possible, set up reflectors or flares available in the car emergency kit. Check your car emergency kit now and if you don’t have flares or reflectors, order some now.
#5 Call the Police to File an Accident Report
If you are involved in an accident and if there is minimal vehicle damage and no injuries, you should immediately call the police in order to file an accident report. This accident report records all the important information and it could be of great help if you are sued by the other party months later. Also, all the medical injuries are not evident right away at the time of the accident. Ensure that you contact Stephens Law Firm Accident Lawyers.
If police do not arrive at the accident scene, it is your responsibility to go to the nearest police station in order to file an accident report. You should do it as quickly as possible as the details will still be fresh in your mind. If somehow that’s not possible, you can file the accident report through the Department of Motor Vehicles of your state. Don’t forget to provide all the details including the location, time, date as well as the name of witnesses, injuries to motorists and vehicles as well as the sequence of events. You should do it as quickly as possible and in writing.