6 Crucial Things To Do After a Car Accident
Every year, there are roughly more than 6 million car accidents that occur in the United States. In 2014 alone, there were approximately 2 million rear-end collisions which accounted for nearly 33% of all car crashes that year. In fact, a rear-end collision happens every eight seconds, on average, on roads in the United States.
After a collision, the people involved in the car accident are usually so rattled and shocked that they can’t think properly about what to do. That’s why it’s crucial to prepare yourself for unexpected events like this.
We’ve put together this guide to help you understand and know the things to do at the collision scene and after that. Being ready for all things involved in a car accident – regardless if it’s a major collision or just a tiny fender bender – will make the process go more smoothly.
1. Check for Injuries
The first step you should do after a collision is check if you or your passengers are hurt. This step takes precedence over everything else because safety should be your top priority on any occasion.
You should make sure that everybody is safe and unharmed. In case anybody needs medical assistance, you should immediately call 911 for help.
2. Stay and Don’t Leave the Scene
No matter how small the car accident is, never leave and drive away from the collision scene. In minor collisions where you’re not severely injured, can still drive, and your car is not badly damaged, you can slowly steer your vehicle towards the side of the road. Otherwise, it may impede traffic or cause more accidents, especially if the collision happened on the freeway or a major street.
Keep your hazard lights on, put up emergency triangle reflectors, or set up flares to make the other passing cars be aware and help avoid further accidents. If the lights aren’t working or have been damaged in the collision, you can use a flashlight to alert oncoming cars and let them see your vehicle even in the dark.
3. Contact the Police
If no highway patrol or police witnessed the scene, it’s recommended to call the cops. Regardless of the severity of the collision, your insurance provider will require you to submit a police report when you file a claim. In cases where the cars involved in the collision are not obstructing traffic, they should be left untouched where they are.
4. Remember to Take Photos
When we say take pictures, it doesn’t mean you should do selfies in front of the cars. Use your mobile phone’s camera to snap images of the vehicles, especially the parts where there is evident damage.
You should also take pictures of your apparent injuries if there are any. Remember, though, that once the cops arrive, you shouldn’t impede their investigation and let them handle everything unless you are being questioned.
5. Information Exchange
It usually takes a bit for the cops to arrive at the scene. If you’re not injured, take this time to exchange important information with the other car’s driver and passengers, such as their insurance information, names, phone numbers, and addresses.
You must also gather contact information from witnesses (if there are any) so you can easily reach them if needed. The police officer investigating the accident will give you a number you can use to get the police report later.
6. Notify Your Insurance Company
As soon as possible, inform your insurance provider about the accident. The majority of policies require prompt reporting of any accidents and necessitate you to fully cooperate in case of further investigation.
Does your insurance policy include medical benefits? If so, make use of it since you pay a premium to have that kind of coverage. Make sure to submit your medical bills (only the ones related to the accident) so you can be compensated for them accordingly.
Choose a Reputable Auto Body Repair Shop
It’s crucial to pick a reputable shop for car repairs after an accident, even if it’s for a simple dent repair. In getting a car fixed, you can go to an auto body shop Chicago and other cities have that offer the best services suited for your needs. Once they finish restoring your car, you won’t have any regrets because you went to a reputable shop.