Car accidents can happen at any time and may have catastrophic outcomes. Whether an accident is caused by another driver’s negligence or circumstances outside of your control, it is important to take stock of your surroundings and remain calm. Keep reading for more information about what you should do after a car accident.
Step 1: Get to Safety
Whether you have been in an accident on an access road, overpass, mountain pass, or cliffside, you must get yourself and passengers to safety. If possible, get the car out of the middle of the road to a safer place. Turn the car off and begin to assess your surroundings.
Step 2: Examine Yourself and Passengers
After an accident, it is crucial that you examine yourself and any passengers in the car. Check for injuries or wounds from the crash and test your range of motion to determine whether fractures or other injuries occurred. Its crucial that you assess the health of everyone in the car as it will inform your next steps and whether you should prioritize emergency medical assistance.
Step 3: Contact Emergency Services
Regardless of the scope of the accident, you must contact emergency services. Contacting the police does not mean you accept fault in the accident, it may help your case as police reports are often thorough and, on the record, so insurance companies can easily access them for claims. Once emergency responders are on site, cooperate with their instructions. These professionals are trained to assess risk and can help you get to safety if you have not already.
Step 4: Collect Evidence
While first responders may collect evidence at the scene, its crucial that you collect your own evidence in the meantime. Take photos of everything from your vehicle, injuries, and the road to your surroundings. Environmental circumstances can be the cause of an accident so be sure to note any weather conditions or geographical interferences that may have contributed. When taking photos, utilize as many angles as possible with and without flash.
Step 5: Avoid Self Incrimination
While it is not an admission of guilt to contact law enforcement after an accident, you could be at risk of self-incrimination. Self-incrimination occurs when a person admits to culpability during interrogation or police questioning without being prompted. When police ask you about the accident, avoid making excuses or suppositions – simply respond with the facts.
Step 6: Exchange Information
You must exchange insurance and contact info with other drivers. Be sure to record the name and number of every driver and passenger involved in the accident. It’s also important to collect license plate numbers, vehicle make, model, and year of all vehicles at the scene. If possible, record the name and badge number of the responding officer.
Step 7: File a Claim
It is crucial that you file an insurance claim as soon as possible after an accident. Submit your evidence and the contact information of other drivers and be patient as you wait for an insurance adjuster to assess your case.
Step 8: Contact an Attorney
If you or a loved one has been in a car accident, contact Action Law Group immediately. Our compassionate attorneys can assess your claim, gather evidence, and build a case with your best interests in mind. When you need compassionate guidance backed by experience, choose Action Law Group.
Contact us today for more information.