What should I do if I’m involved in a traffic accident?
Stay Calm and Wait For First Responders to Arrive on Scene
If you are ever involved in a traffic accident or have been involved in an autmobile accident, then the first thing you want to do is stay calm and make sure you and the passengers in your vehicle are safe. If you feel that you are safe in your vehicle, then call for help and wait for police to arrive on scene.
Get Out of Your Vehicle if You and Passengers Are in Danger
You should never move your vehicle or get out of your vehicle unless you feel that you and the passengers in your vehicle are in danger or you have been instructed by emergency personnel or the police to do so. This is especially true if you have been injured. Moving your vehicle or walking around after an accident can exacerbate injuries, so you should try to stay still until you are sure that it is okay for you to move.
Call For Help Right Away
Even if you think you are okay and want to handle the accident on your own with the other driver, you should always call the police to the scene of an accident If you not call police to the scene, then you will never have a police report written by a police officer who arrived on scene at the traffic accident.
Don’t Refuse Medical Assistance or Treatment
When first reponsders arrive, the first thing they are going to do is check both drivers and passengers to make certain everyone is okay. Many drivers and passengers who are in a state of shock are often unaware of their personal injuries. Sometimes people who have been involved in an accident refuse medical assistance or treatment because they feel okay. After the initial shock wears off hours or days later, many of these same people start to feel pain.
If you have been in an accident, then you should accept any offers to be transported to the emergency room for further evaluation. Although refusing medical assistance and treatment is not always detrimental to a personal injury case, insurance companies and insurance defense firms take it into consideration when settling a case. If first reponsders recommend going to the hospital to get checked out, then you should consider taking them up on their offer. The last thing you want to do is walk around with latent injuries that can cause problems for you in the future.
Give Police Officers Your Identification
If you are able to access your driver’s license, registration and insurance, then you should take it out and have it ready for police officers to review when they arrive on scene. Police officers will take down all the information they need for he report, including but not limited to your name, address, driver’s license number, insurance company and other information that must be noted in the police report.
Making a Statement – Your Side of The Story
After collecting your information, police officers will want to get your side of the story. This is true even if they can surmise what happened from the scene of the accident. Even if you feel that you are entirely responsible for the accident, do not make any statement with respect to whether you were at fault. Consult with your attorney to find out what type of information you should provide to insurance companies that may want to get your statement as well.
Take Photographs and Video Footage
If are well enough to take pictures, then you want to take as many of your vehicle and the other driver’s vehicle as well. Photographs of the scene of the accident will help your attorney reconstruct the scene of the accident. In addition, they may also be helpful in other ways as well.
Before leaving the scene of the accident, don’t forget to remove your belongings from your vehicle. If you have a dash cam or on board camera that captured the accident, then you should take and remove the card to preserve it for evidence. If you are not well enough to remove your belongings, then you can ask a passenger or first responders for help.
Contact an Accident Attorney
Once you have been in an accident, one of the first things you should do is contact a lawyer for further information on what else that needs to be done once you are involved in accidents. The circumstances of each case can be very different, so it is important to ask the attorney you speak with if there is anything other documentation that you need to provide. By contacting an attorney for a consultation as soon after a traffic accident as possible, you will know exactly what you need to do.