Immediately after you have been in a car accident, you have some things that you need to do. None of these things are particularly difficult, and doing them will only help you in the long run. Read on to learn how to best use this crucial time.
1. Stay Calm
Adrenaline will flood your body; this can make you feel off-balance. Take a moment and find your calm. Close your eyes for a moment and take a few deep breaths. Focusing on the immediate next step can also help you keep calm because you aren’t going to be overwhelmed at all the things you need to do. Looking right at the next step helps make sure you don’t miss anything.
2. Move to Safety
You also want to make sure that you will be safe. That means moving your car to the side of the road, if possible. If you can’t move your car, then move yourself and any passengers, as long as no one is injured. People who are unconscious or injured severely should stay where they are until medics can clear them so that no injuries get exacerbated.
3. Call Emergency Services
Once you are as safe as possible, call emergency services. The police need to come out to record the accident and get all pertinent information. Paramedics will need to take care of the injured and possibly transport them to the hospital. The fire department may also need to be called in to extract a person from the cars or to handle fire risks as well as site cleanup after the accident.
4. Check the Other Driver
You need to check on the other driver and their passengers. You need to see if they have any injuries or need any help. You will also need to get the driver’s information for them, and this is a good time to do it. Consider taking a picture of their idea so that you can’t lose it. Remember your calm place and don’t engage in a confrontation with the other parties.
5. Don’t Admit Fault
You may feel the urge to talk and just keep talking and say that it is your fault. However, saying that the accident was your fault or suggesting that you might be liable for anything can open you up for a lawsuit later. So watch what you say very carefully, and don’t admit fault at all or say that you could have prevented the accident.
6. Document the Area
Another thing you need to do is to document the location of the accident as well as the damage to the cars and any property. Having photographic proof will make sure that you don’t forget any damage and that no later damage is getting added to what happened in your accident. Taking pictures of the people involved can be more difficult, since people can always refuse to be photographed.
7. Talk to Witnesses
Speak to anyone who stopped at the accident or anyone who was around during the accident. The more witnesses to the accident, the better off you may be. Each witness saw a different perspective and they can shed light as to what they saw happen. Hopefully, between all the witnesses’ testimonies and what you saw happen, fault and liability can be properly assessed.
If you have been in an accident, contact the attorneys at The Jaklitsch Law Group. We can help you to get what you are entitled to from the insurance company and the other parties involved in the accident. Our attorneys don’t get paid unless they win your case, so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by making an appointment to come see us.