Did you know that there are six million car accidents a year on average in the United States alone? This equals roughly eighteen thousand car accidents a day.
Experiencing a car accident can be terrifying, especially if you haven’t been in one before. You may not know what to do or where to go for advice.
Luckily, that’s where this article comes in. We’ve compiled the basic do’s and don’ts of being in a car accident so that you don’t end up worrying about what you should or shouldn’t be doing.
Although panicking might be an instinctive reaction, it could make things worse for you by fogging up your memory or ability to remain rational.
Instead of panicking, make sure that you stay calm. Call for help and law enforcement, and wait until they arrive. Make sure that you remember the details of how the accident happened.
Doing this helps you both when making your statement and when looking out for your personal well-being.
Do Call the Police to the Scene of the Car Accident
It may seem like the best idea to just work things out amongst yourselves if you’ve gotten in a significant car accident, but it is always best to call law enforcement.
This can save you a lot of trouble. The other person in the car wreck may try and convince you to keep the police out of it, but it is an important step to take.
Involving the police will help make sure that you can properly establish fault. Beyond that, it sets up a paper trail, making it easier for you to get your car or any potential injuries taken care of.
Don’t Leave the Scene of the Car Accident
It is important to stay at the scene of the accident until you are cleared to leave. There are many different reasons to do this.
The first reason it’s a good idea to stay is that you can gather witness information from anyone who was around at the time of the accident. You can also exchange insurance information with the other driver.
It’s also important to stay at the site of the accident because the police will need to take your statement. Furthermore, someone may come with law enforcement to offer you help.
If all of these things have happened, and you have been cleared to leave, then you may go.
Do Accept Medical Attention
If you have been in a vehicle wreck, it may not always be obvious that you are injured. In fact, some people don’t notice until hours or even days after the car accident. By then, the injury may have gotten worse, whereas before it would have been treatable.
In this case, it is always important to get checked out by a medical professional as soon as possible. They will be able to spot injuries that you wouldn’t be able to realize.
Even if nothing seems injured on the surface, they may pick up on a symptom of something you would have missed.
Do Exchange Information
If you are able to, it’s important to promptly exchange information with the other driver. Necessary information includes the make and model of their car, their name, their phone number, and how to get in touch with their insurance.
If they are driving a car for their business, you will also need to get their employer’s information, as their employer may be liable for any potential damages caused.
Don’t Accept Blame or Accuse Others
There are many different reasons why car wrecks happen. While it may be tempting to blame yourself or to accuse other people, don’t do it.
Don’t make any statements blaming your car or yourself. Don’t say anything that could be mistaken as an accusation against other people. Leave the investigation up to law enforcement and let them decide who’s at fault.
This is necessary both to protect yourself and when making a claim to your vehicle insurance.
Do Get a Lawyer After a Car Accident
When you’ve been in a car wreck, you should definitely get a car accident attorney. These people are specifically trained to be able to navigate the complex world of laws, liability, and insurance claims.
Having an attorney means you are a lot less likely to be taken advantage of. The knowledge that lawyers have means they are better equipped to help you than you are to help yourself.
Don’t Sign Anything
If an insurance company gives you paperwork or someone wants to settle with you, do not sign anything right away. Instead, make sure to take it to your car accident lawyer.
These lawyers will be able to read through the paperwork or the agreement to make sure you aren’t agreeing to anything you don’t want to. In addition, if it is a settlement, they will make sure you are receiving the proper amount of compensation.
Contact Us Today
Now that you’ve heard the basics of what to do after a car accident, this should help you keep a level head when you need it. However, if you have additional questions or are already looking for a lawyer, there is one last thing you can do.
You can contact us here, and we will either answer your questions or help set you up with a free consultation.