What to Do If You Are in a Car Crash.
January 19, 2017
This article we try to cover important aspects related what to do if you are in a car crash. Download a free sample of a Car Accident Information Form from the internet and keep a blank in your vehicle’s glove cubicle.
This form is particularly useful during the trauma of a car accident but also serves as a guide, for you to obtain essential information. Here we look at what to do if you are in a car crash.
What to do if you are in a car crash – the first thing to do is STOP
The first and most important step is to stop immediately without obstructing traffic flow. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that since it is only a minor accident that you shouldn’t stop.
Call the Police and or Medics
Emergency services numbers stored on your cell phone will come in very handy at an accident scene. Whether or not you have caused the accident, do not to try and move an injured person and especially do not render any medical assistance if you are not qualified. It is best to alert the police and any other emergency department, should you need their assistance.
While waiting for the police to arrive:
- Try to secure the scene,
- Especially in major accidents, leave the vehicles as they were at the moment of the impact,
- Ensure that no evidence is removed or hindered, as it will be essential should ensuing inquiries be required and expressly for felonious investigations,
- If the police do not come to the accident scene, then you have an obligation to report the accident within 24 hours of its occurrence.
Gather as much information and WRITE IT DOWN
Referring to the sample Car Accident Information Form, write down information related to:
- Details of how the accident occurred, the scene, weather and other conditions,
- Make, model and plate numbers of all involved vehicles,
- Full names, driver’s license number, insurance company, insurance policy number and contact details of all drivers involved,
- Damages to all involved vehicles and or properties,
- Your and other parties’ injuries,
- All witnesses names and contact details,
- Names and badge numbers of all police and medics as well as and contact information of tow and storage companies.
When the police arrive on the scene, they will also formulate their incident report which is crucial for purposes of insurance claims, but take down your information too.
Don’t say or admit to anything – What to Do If You Are in a Car Crash
As you’ll no doubt be under severe stress right, you definitely won’t be able to think as clearly as usual.
You might even be experiencing pain, so be vigilant not to apologise or say anything to the other driver, injured individual(s) or any other person at the scene, except for the police. Remember to stick to the facts and do not change your story.
What you say at accident scenes:
- Serves as hugely influential evidence,
- Might be used to you going forward,
- Has the tendency to cause quite a lot of damage – emotional and otherwise,
- Might be taken as liability for causing the accident,
- Could be misinterpreted or misunderstood.
Don’t Make Any Agreements
Don’t fall into the trap of being coaxed by another party or consider a quick solution by striking a deal, no matter how tempting, not at the accident scene or afterwards!
You should avoid it because:
- Certain vehicle damage might only be evident during and inspection,
- There might be even more damages to your car than you think,
- You might have sustained injuries that only fully manifest afterwards,
- The other party might retract later, and
- Too much time might have elapsed at retraction, creating challenges for you with third party insurance claims from his company due to his failed to report it.
No one can argue with proof reflecting the full extent of an accident. Photograph to take should include:
- All vehicles showing various positions in the location but before moving it out of the way,
- Damages to all vehicles and properties involved,
- All Injuries even if it only seems as minor as a cut or a bruise,
- Impressions made by vehicles on the road surface or buildings,
- Any debris in the road or elsewhere,
- Anything that caused the accident,
- All involved drivers’ and witnesses vehicle license plates,
- All involved driver’s licenses.
It has been proven that unbiased witness reports win many car accident cases, so pay attention to this fact.
Leaving the Accident Scene
Whatever you do, do not leave the accident scene, even if it appears that nothing serious has occurred. The law states that failure to flee an accident scene or leaving early will result in imprisonment or hefty fines.
Many insurance companies use affiliated tow truck companies to remove damaged vehicles and storage facilities in an accident situation. Immediately contact your insurance company for guidance in about your policy in this regard.
Keep in continuous contact with your insurance company for the process of your claim. Hopefully, it won’t be necessary, but you may have to consider utilising the expert services of a car accident attorney should any claim challenges be experienced.
Now you know what to do if you are in a car crash if it should happen to you.
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All info was correct at time of publishing