The thought of being in a car accident is enough in itself to make a lot of people feel anxious and concerned, and the experience of this becoming reality is still worse. For many of us, there is a great deal of uncertainty and a lot of questions: Could I still work if I wasn’t able to drive? What if I had to go to court? How would I cover my medical bills?
If you’re fortunate, you’ll never have to answer these questions for real, but most people who drive will find themselves in a crash once or more during their career behind the wheel. While it is never a fun experience, it is important to get to the point where you can think about it without becoming anxious. In part, this is because you need to bear in mind how you should react, and in particular the things you should never do after a car accident…
Don’t leave the scene of an accident
It depends where you are driving, but most places have quite concrete laws when it comes to protocol in the aftermath of a car accident. One law which turns up time and again is that you must not leave the scene of the accident until authorized to do so. Instead, call 911 and report the incident, then wait until officers have arrived and taken your statement. Ask them if you are free to go, and only then should you leave. Failure to wait there could see you prosecuted; if people have been injured, or property damaged, you could face prison.
Don’t get into an argument
It’s possible – probable, in fact – that in the aftermath of an accident, there will be raised tempers and a lot of nervous energy. If you have been involved in a crash with another vehicle, there’s a chance that blame will be flying around. Let’s be clear; this is a terrible time to be apportioning blame, so just exchange insurance details with the other driver and then call a legal expert like Wetzel Law Firm. You’ll want decent legal advice in the event that the other party tries to blame you for the crash.
Don’t forget to document the incident
Car insurance companies and law enforcement will be keen to establish the facts of the case, whether or not the accident leads to legal proceedings. In the absence of concrete fact, this can sometimes lead to assumptions and speculation which may not tilt in your favor. It is for this reason that you should document everything you can, taking photographs and video with your cell phone to show damage to and position of the vehicles involved, as well as any property, road signs or barriers which may have been struck in the crash. You’ll be asked for your account of events, and it’s helpful to be able to back up your words with proof.
No-one wants to be involved in a car accident, but if you follow the above instructions you can at least make the best – or avoid the worst – outcomes of any accident you end up in.