Any type of accident can be scary. It is quite possible that you may hit a car or a pedestrian while driving and not know what to do. Car accidents are very common these days; however, a few simple steps can save you from a lot of headaches. People lose their sanity, get emotional, and may even behave recklessly when a car accident takes place. However, there are some important steps that one has to take right at the accident scene and immediately after an accident.
The first steps to take after a vehicular accident are as follows:
Stay Where You Are
Staying right at the accident scene is a must. If you leave the place immediately to get your injuries treated, you may be slapped with criminal charges. However, if you feel that you are in an unsafe area, you should stay inside your car till the police or any other sort of assistance reaches you. If you still feel threatened, you can drive your vehicle to the nearest police station for help. Speak to the other driver by rolling down your window by an inch, but only if you think that there is no danger of confrontation. You can communicate to the other party that you have called 911 for assistance and you will wait till they arrive.
Call for Medical Help in Case of Injuries
Call for medical assistance immediately if there are any injuries to the passengers or the drivers of both the parties. Stay in your car until help arrives, and tell the other party that you are not getting out of the car because of security concerns.
Call the Police
Once you are sure that you are safe and medical help is on the way, call the police. Upon their arrival at the accident scene, the police officer who you have called will file a report based on the accident. You will need this police report if there is any physical injury or vehicle damage for insurance claim.
Record the Accident Scene
Take a lot of pictures from various angles at the accident scene. The pictures should clearly show both the vehicles in their respective states. These photos will help the concerned insurance company assess the extent of damage caused by the accident. After the accident, contact the insurance company and share with them the photos and the police report. Don’t ever lie because if you are caught for providing wrong information, your insurance will be canceled and you will have to pay for the damages from your own pocket.
Keep Medical Care Records
If you are injured during an accident, keep a record of all the doctor visits, medications, and treatments. These records will help when you contact an insurance company or your attorney.
Assess the Property Damage
Assessing the value of all the property damage that may include a fence, an electricity post, and more is important. Evaluate every moment of the accident and then share this information with your insurance adjuster. Hire an attorney for sure if there is any disagreement.
Be cautious when you discuss the accident with anyone. Your attorney’s presence while you are talking to the members of other party will certainly help. Avoid discussing anything with anyone from the opposite party before you talk to your attorney. It is always better if your attorney does all the talking on your behalf.
Avoid Early Settlements
After the accident, you may receive offers for an early settlement. However, make sure that your settlement amount includes all your expenses like medical care, property value etc. Some injuries may show up several days after the accident; so, an early settlement should be avoided.
Taking the necessary steps after an accident will help in easing a lot of your worries. Your life will be safer and you will be compensated for all damages caused by the car accident. It is important to understand that the effects of a car accident can last very long; however, taking the necessary measures will help you protect your rights.