Being in an accident is a frightening experience. While you may think that it will never happen to you, accidents happen all the time. It is important to be prepared when an accident happens, so you know what to do. There are many things that can help the situation. From calling the police, to checking on anyone else who is involved. Here are 5 things you NEED to do after an accident to make this process easier if not the cause of the accident.
The safety of yourself, and any other party involved is extremely important. Knowing this information before you call 911 can help the operator better assess the incident. Letting them know how many people are hurt and the seriousness of their injuries can help. Start with yourself, make sure you are okay enough to get up and walk to the other party.
Call the police and report the accident. Answer any and all questions to the best of your ability on the phone. Report how many people are involved and how many you believe to be injured. Before the police arrive, do not move anything, including the vehicles. If the vehicles are in the way of traffic, ask the operator what you should do. When the police arrive, answer all questions as best as you can. It is important to give as much detail as you can remember, but do not assume, guess, or speculate anything you do not remember. If you do not know, say that.
After calling the police, take some pictures. Take pictures of any visible damage done to all cars involved. Take pictures of any visible injuries including cuts, scratches, and anything else. Take pictures of the surrounding areas, for example, if pieces of either car are laying somewhere else. Once the police get there, do not interfere with what they are doing by trying to take pictures. Pick the important things and then let the police do their job.
Next, call your insurance agency. Report the accident and answer any questions they ask you. If there is another party involved, get their insurance information as well. Know if your insurance covers any medical expenses and know your rights.
Lastly, as time goes by, keep everything. Create a file for the accident and keep it somewhere accessible. Print out any pictures you took, keep the record of the claim you filed, ask the police for a copy of anything they have on the incident. If there is ever an issue with the other party, your insurance agency, or anything else, you will already have all the information you need to protect yourself.
Accidents happen, which is why it is best to be as prepared as you can. Make sure to stay calm and not just start angrily blaming the other party. The last, and most important thing, is to reach out to us. We can aid you in the process and make sure you don’t lose any money. If you have any questions, or need any legal advice, give us a call at (209) 900-8200 or fill out the web form below. We are happy to help!