Car accidents can leave behind scars that run deeper than the physical ones. That is especially true when the accident wasn’t even your fault. Unfortunately, with so many drivers on the road these days – accidents are inevitable.
That doesn’t mean you should hide in a ball in the corner every day – life needs to go on despite the uncertainty that each day brings. Drive as safely and as defensively as you can, and if you do get into an accident that is not your fault, then do these five things below:
1. Check If Everyone Is Okay
As soon as you realize what has happened, your instinct might be to panic. As hard as it might be, try to remain calm so you can assess the situation. Time seems to move incredibly slowly directly after the accident, so give yourself a minute to gather your thoughts.
Once you can, do a quick check to make sure that everyone is okay. If you are not injured and can get out of the vehicle – now is the time to do so. Check if the other driver and passengers are okay and call for help.
2. Don’t Let the Other Driver Leave
Pennsylvania car accident laws make it illegal to flee or even leave the scene of a car accident. The driver has to stay at the scene if there is any vehicle damage or if anyone is injured.
If you notice the other driver is new and trying to flee the scene, reminds them that they need to stay calm and obey the law. Take note of their license and take photos if you can. That way you will have proof if you need to make a case against them later on.
3. Exchange Insurance Information
Once you’ve established that everyone is okay, you should exchange insurance and contact information. The other driver will probably try to make an excuse for their distracted driving, but it doesn’t matter what their reason is – they have caused an accident that was not your fault, and they will be held accountable.
4. Wait for the Police
Once those steps are done, the only thing left is for you to wait for the police to arrive. They will be able to block off the area to oncoming traffic, which will prevent further accidents from occurring.
The police officer will then assess the accident scene and compile a report. If need be, the officer can also call the authorities to request more help.
5. Take Time to Recover
Even if you don’t seem injured, car accidents tend to affect people the most the next day. If possible, allow yourself plenty enough time to rest and recover. Your adrenalin will keep you going for quite a few hours after the accident, but you will crash later. Rest is the most vital part of the recovery process, so don’t rush through it, or you could delay your healing. Take things one day at a time – you’ll be as good as new in no time.