The trauma from being in a serious car collision can cause confusion and panic. Try to memorize these steps, so you’re not making unnecessary mistakes.
If you hopped into your vehicle and got into a car accident today, would you know what to do?
Americans love to hit the highway, but accidents happen. Unfortunately, there is an average of six million car accidents every year in the US, with two million drivers experiencing permanent injuries.
Knowing the steps to take following a car collision is an important part of driving. Let’s review what you need to do if you’re involved in a car wreck.
Get to Safety and Contact Authorities
The most important thing to do following a car crash is to make sure you are safe. If you can, pull over and get your vehicle off the road. Make sure everyone in your car is alright. If it’s safe, exit the vehicle.
Check with passengers in other vehicles and help them as needed. If anyone is seriously injured, call for an ambulance immediately.
Once everyone involved is accounted for, call the police. You should always contact the authorities, no matter how minor the crash.
Having the police come to the site of the crash is the only way to get an official report. Some states will cite drivers who do not report a collision.
After the police report has been filed, be sure to obtain an official copy. You may need the report for insurance purposes or to resolve future disputes.
Exchange Car Insurance Information
Never leave the scene of an accident without exchanging information with everyone else involved.
Obtain information on the vehicle owner. If the driver during the crash was someone other than the vehicle owner, get their information as well. After a collision, ask for the following information:
- First and last name
- Phone number
- License number and license plate number
- Insurance company and policy number
- Make and model of all vehicles involved
- Name and badge number of the police officer responding to the collision
You may not feel pain immediately after the accident, but problems can arise a few days after. Injuries like whiplash, head problems, and internal bleeding may develop over the 24-hours following the accident.
If the scene of the accident is safe enough, take detailed photos. The pictures will provide sound evidence to aid in future disputes.
Take photos of the interior and exterior of all vehicles involved. Capture the surrounding roadway, including street signs, skid marks, and debris that played a role in the collision. Take pictures of your injuries immediately following the accident.
Find a Doctor After a Car Collision
Between filing a police report and working out insurance claims, a lot is going on after a bad car accident. Don’t forget to take care of yourself. Visit a doctor for a checkup to ensure your health is in good shape.
Some of the most common post-collision injuries include:
- Soft tissue injuries (such as bruises and sprains)
- Back and neck issues
There are qualified doctors available to assist following a car wreck. This link shows you how to find a doctor after a car accident.
Explore More Life Tips
Knowing what to do after a car collision makes you a well-prepared driver. Don’t forget to take care of yourself and visit with a medical professional following a car wreck. Insurance claims can wait, but your health cannot.
For more tips and life hacks, check out our blog.