A car accident can happen at anytime or anywhere. In an automobile accident you can suffer personal injuries or at the very least in can leave you feeling disoriented and worried. You are driving and traffic and without warning your are in a traffic accident.
That’s why I am providing with some basic information to help you if you should be unlucky and have a car accident. Our Seven Step Guide can help you make good decisions after an accident. Help keep you and others safe.
1. Stop your vehicle and get out, ONLY IF SAFE TO DO SO.
After a car accident, stop your vehicle, turn off the engine, put the car into park or if a manual transmission put the hand brake on. Take a few seconds to gather yourself. Put on your warning flashers. Before exiting your vehicle make sure it is safe to do so. Calmly and safely exit your vehicle.
2. Check on others involved, MAKE SURE NO ONE IS BADLY HURT
Makes sure that everyone involved in the car accident are safe and not badly hurt. Call 911 if anyone seems to be injured. Even a seemingly minor complaint such as dizziness may be sign of head trauma and the person should be looked at by a medical professional. If the collision is not too bad and no one is badly and you are in moving traffic, you are at risk for being involved in a second accident. So consider step 3.
3. Move Cars to A Safe Area, IF IT CAN BE DONE SAFELY
If your car is drivable and no one is seriously injured , move your car to a safe area. Such as the shoulder of the road or curb side. Many people get injured in “second accidents” because cars are left in dangerous locations. However, if moving your car is not possible then turn on your hazzard lights and if you have them put out flares or warning lanterns. That last thing you need is another car running into you or your vehicle.
4. Call the Highway Patrol or Local Police to the Accident Scene, DON’T ARGUE WITH THEM
A official accident report is often invaluable when dealing with your or the other driver’s insurance company. Cooperate with the investigating officer, but you probably should avoid admitting fault or blaming others at the accident scene. The investigating officers gather facts and statements to determine who, if anyone, they believe is at fault in for the crash.
At times, the Highway Patrol or Police will decline to come to the scene of the accident, especially if it is a minor collision and no one is seriously hurt. Whether the police come to the scene of the accident or not, make sure you gather all the necessary information. Sometimes the police do not get all the information available. See step 5 and 6 below.
5. Photographs and Clips of the Accident Scene, ONLY IF IT CAN BE DONE SAFELY
Do not hesitate to use your cell phone to take photographs or clips of the accident scene, if safe to do so. Such evidence may be helpful later on to establish what happened and why. As well, photographs or clips can document many aspect of the accident. Including; vehicle identity (i.e. license plate numbers, color and type of car); vehicle damage; street layout and configuration. Often these photographs and clips help in resolving issues later on.
6. Gather Information.
Try to get as much information as possible. Cell phones are great for taking pictures of not only the scene of the accident but also drivers licenses, insurance information, etc . . . as well as using the note features. If you do not have a cell phone write down as much info as possible. The information you should get following a car accident, includes:
Names addresses and telephone numbers for the other driver(s) and passenger(s)
Makes and models of all vehicles involved
License plate numbers of all vehicles involved
Insurance information for each vehicle involved
Names addresses and telephone numbers for any eyewitnesses. Suumary of what witnesses saw
Location of the accident
The name and badge number of any responding police officers
7. Contact Your Insurance Company to Report the Car Accident.
Many insurance companies now provide their customers with toll free numbers to report accidents, even from the scene of the accident. Other companies have a process to file claims on line. Your insurance card should have contact information on it. Usually, your insurance company will guide you through the process of getting your car fixed and letting you know what coverages you have.
If you have any questions following a car accident or you have injured you may want to contact a personal injury attorney. Most personal injury attorneys offer free initial consultations you should avail yourself of this valuable and free service.
As an experienced Pasadena personal injury attorney, I can assist you should you have any questions. Please feel free to call Richard M. Katz, Esq., am right here to address your concerns and offer you assistance. For a complimentary assessment, call me at 626-796-6333 or contact me through my website .