Getting in a car accident can cause serious panic – especially in the moment. However, making sure that you take the correct steps and handle the incident calmly is really important.
There are a few things you should have in place ahead of time, like car insurance. Being in touch with a good attorney from a reliable firm such as Lamber Goodnow Injury Lawyers is always a good idea too. However, these things can’t be done after you’ve already had the accident – but here’s what you can and should do.
Check for Injuries
First of all, make sure that you and everyone else around you are okay. Step away from your vehicle if you can and assess how you’re feeling.
If you’re okay, head over to the other involved parties and help them out. Make sure that everyone is breathing and if you notice any serious injuries or issues, call an ambulance right away.
Stay at the Scene
It’s important that you stay at the scene of the accident, especially if you or anyone else has been seriously injured.
You’ll need to gather information and evidence of the crash. Take photographs of the vehicles, any damage and injuries, the area and location and other visual indicators. You can also gather names and contact details, registration numbers and witnesses if possible.
Report the Incident
You’ll need to report the accident to the local authorities too. You will have to describe how the crash occurred, and it’s a good idea to have your lawyer help you through this process to ensure you don’t say anything that implies you are at fault.
Keep in mind that you have limited time to report a car accident, so you’ll want to get this done as soon as you can. The time you have to report the collision varies from state to state. For example, in PA, you must file the Pennsylvania traffic crash report within five days of the incident.
Call Your Insurance
Having the right car insurance is crucial when you find yourself in these situations. However, once the accident has occurred, it’s too late to change anything and you’ll need to contact whichever insurance company you’re with.
Whether there is damage to your car, another party’s car, or both, you have to report and describe the incident to the insurers. If you’re found to be at fault, your insurance will be covering the damages.
See Your Doctor
Even if you haven’t got any visible injuries from the accident, it’s a good idea to visit your general practitioner soon after the crash for a check-up.
There is a chance you might be suffering from injuries you aren’t even aware of, and they’ll be able to assess whether or not you’re all in the medical sense.
Reach Out for Help
Remember that a serious car accident can be traumatising for some people, and you might struggle with psychological repercussions, which is completely normal.
Don’t be afraid to reach out for help from a professional. Therapy and counselling can be very helpful tools for processing and moving past a traumatic experience. If you’re struggling to cope, ask your doctor for referrals or recommendations and talk to someone who can help.