It’s nerve wracking to be in a car accident. But no matter how stressful and inconvenient it may be, it’s important to keep a level head and consider your next actions immediately after a car accident, carefully.
Here are 5 tips on how to calmly deal with the situation right after a car accident.
1. Pullover and make a complete stop
The last thing you need to do is panic and leave the scene.
The moment you crash or slightly bump into someone else’s car, the first thing you should do is hit the brakes and pull over by the side of the road. Leaving the scene of a car accident will be considered as a hit-and-run, which is illegal.
2. Check for damages or injuries
Even if think your vehicle only suffered a few small dents, which can be quickly fixed with paintless dent repair jobs, always go the extra mile by checking:
- Your person, to identify any injuries
- All areas of your vehicle for other damages
- The other person/s involved, to see if they sustained any injury
- Other vehicles that might have been damaged
If you find yourself in a major car crash, identify which persons require urgent medical attention. Unless you are qualified to do first aid, work with your counterpart to contact the police and first responders, then wait for them to arrive.
3. Contact the police
, the police should always be involved. Through them, you can create a legal accident report, which will cover crucial details of how the incident happened.
Here’s are some key points to go over with the police:
- Date and time of the accident
- Location of the accident (e.g. the exact highway or street you were on)
- The direction you were heading to when the accident took place
- The direction which you saw the other driver was head to when the accident took place
- Weather conditions
- Possible witnesses that can attest to the facts ;
While you should do your best to share what you can with the authorities, avoid divulging key information right away to the other parties of the accident. This is because giving excessive information to other parties might negatively impact how your insurance company can cover your accident claims.
4. Collect vehicle and contact information
Aside from laying down the facts of the incident to the proper authorities, don’t forget to take note of the contact details of other parties involved, such as name, address, phone number, and license.
In addition, the following are crucial to acquire to process insurance claims:
- Description of the vehicles in the accident, including vehicle model, license plate, and vehicle identification numbers
- Name of the insurance company of the other driver/s involved
With the widespread use of smartphones with decent quality cameras, it’s now much easier to take note of all this information. Take photos of the scene and the vehicles wherever necessary.
5. Check with insurance company
Contact your insurance company as soon as you can. They will most likely be in a better position to guide you through the steps you need to take following an accident. They will also take you through the specific process of filing your insurance claim.
Conclusion: drive safe and know what you need to do
Nobody wants to be in a car accident, whether it’s minor or major one. Across the US, millions, unfortunately, become involved in such incidents. In 2019, about 4.4 million people were seriously injured due to car accidents.
If you find yourself involved in an accident, keeping your head not only prevents you from overlooking health checks, it also helps you gather any important information you need for legal and insurance purposes.