When a car accident occurs, it often takes place quickly and without much warning. Worse yet, these types of accidents are rather common and can result in a range of injuries, even death. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 1,976 more fatalities from motor vehicle crashes in 2016 than in 2015, specifically, a 5.6 percent increase.
Though you can do everything in your power to prevent a crash (i.e., follow the speed limit, pay attention to your surroundings, adhere to weather conditions), you cannot control the actions of other drivers. Therefore, despite your caution, you can still be involved in a collision. If that happens, it is important to know how to react properly.
Steps to Take after a Car Accident
Safety first. First and foremost, it is imperative to check the safety of yourself and other passengers. Use your judgment. If emergency assistance is needed, do not hesitate to call 9-1-1.
Move your vehicle off the road. Again, the nature of the car accident will dictate your initial response. However, if you are able to, move your vehicle off the road and out of the way of traffic.
Call the police. If the crash is anything more serious than a basic fender bender, you will need to call the police and make an official report.
Exchange information with the other driver(s). Exchange information with all of the other drivers involved in the accident, including phone numbers and insurance details.
Take photographs of the scene. If you have a phone or camera available take photos of the scene of the accident. Make sure to capture images of all vehicles involved, as well as road conditions and street signs.
If applicable, get witness statements. Take a look around to see if anyone witnessed the crash. If there are witnesses around, get their statement and phone number.
Seek medical treatment. Regardless if you are in pain or not, it is a good idea to get checked out by a professional doctor. Some injuries take time to transpire.
Never admit fault. No matter what, never admit fault for the accident – even if you think you are at fault.
Contact a car accident attorney. Lastly, consider contacting a car accident attorney to assist you with the process moving forward.
Experiencing a car accident is never easy, but you do not have to face the challenge alone. For legal assistance, contact a car accident attorney at C. Ray Carlson today. We serve the following areas: Valencia, Stevenson Ranch, Santa Clarita, Fillmore, Santa Paula, and San Fernando Valley.