It is important to take the correct first steps after a car accident. Otherwise, someone who needs medical attention right away may not get it in time. Additionally, you risk having some serious issues with presenting a case if you later decide to claim damages. Be sure to follow the following steps the next time you get into a car accident.
Check Yourself and Others
Immediately after the accident, you will want to check your body and any passengers in your vehicle. If you are able to, the next thing you need to do is check on the other driver, passengers, and any pedestrians or cyclists who may have been affected. Note the condition of each person.
It’s also important to note if you see any gasoline leaking, smoke or sparks coming from either vehicle or if the airbags deployed. You will need to tell the dispatcher about these observations in the next step.
As soon as you know who has been involved in this accident, you need to call 911 so an ambulance can treat the victims. But even if there aren’t any injuries, you still need to call 911 in order for the police to stop by, investigate the scene, and write a report. Additionally, a car accident can easily spark a fire in either one of your vehicles, so the fire department may be called out.
You will want to get the following information from the other driver, as well as any passengers:
- Full name
- Phone number
- Email address
- Insurance policy information (driver only)
You will also want to get the same information from any of the witnesses. The police may ask you to provide this information to them as well. You must provide at least this basic information when they ask.
Explain What Happened
To the best of your ability, recall for the police exactly what happened leading up to, during, and after the collision. What did you notice by sight, sound, or even smell? This is not the same as explaining why the accident happened. This is merely retelling the events as you recall them, so it’s important to keep them clear of any opinions. Make sure that before the police leave that you receive a copy of the police report. You want to be sure no other witnesses or the other driver talk to the police and have it altered after you leave.
It is imperative that you stay calm the entire time. You also do not want to admit fault or make any assumptions about the cause of the accident. The side of the road is not a courthouse, so leave that part up to a competent attorney, such as Lawyers Hipskind and McAninch.
Get Medical Attention
Even if you think you’re fine, you want to be treated right away. A doctor may notice if you have the early signs of a concussion, joint inflammation, internal bleeding, or any other conditions as a result of your accident. You might even have to look at options like Air Ambulance 1 as well.
Hire An Attorney
The insurance company won’t want to pay out, and they will bring their team of attorneys to ensure they don’t. In order for you to get compensation to pay for the damages you incurred as a result of the accident, you will need a personal injury attorney aggressively fighting for you. The sooner you hire an attorney, the sooner you can overcome this hard event.