If you are part of a car accident, it's easy to lose track of what you're doing. Even with the best intentions, it's possible you could make a mistake that ends up costing you in the long run.
To protect against this, it's important to fully understand what you should do in the event of a car accident. This way, if you're put in this position, you'll be more able to make confident and timely decisions despite the shock you might be feeling.
Here are the things you need to do:
- Check yourself and your passengers for injuries: Don't assume you've made it through the accident without injury. Take the time to thoroughly check yourself, paying close attention to any pain or discomfort. Also, remember that not all injuries present symptoms right away.
- Move to safety: If you leave your vehicle in traffic, there's a greater chance of another accident occurring. If you're able, move your vehicle as far off the road as possible. In the event that your car is disabled, stay inside it until it's safe to move.
- Call 911: Many people shy away from making this call, as they don't want to "make a big deal" out of a minor car accident. You should never feel this way. It's better to err on the side of caution. A call to 911 ensures that help is on its way.
- Document the accident: In addition to exchanging information, take photos of your injuries and damage to your vehicle. Also, obtain a copy of the police report and secure contact information for any witnesses.
- Notify your insurance company: You need to do this as soon as you can, but you don't have to do so immediately if you're injured and unable to make the call.
There are many simple steps you can take after a car accident to improve your situation and help ease the tension. If the other driver was at fault, you don't have to accuse this person on the spot. There will be time to take action later.