There are six million car accidents in the US every year. While some drivers manage to cruise through life without ever crashing, chances are, you might be involved in some kind of accident sooner or later.
When that time comes, it pays to know what to do and, more importantly, what not to do. After all, you don’t want to have to learn this kind of vital information for the first time right after a car accident.
Read more to learn what steps you should take and which you should avoid after an auto accident.
DO Stay Calm
Before you do anything, try to get your breathing and heart rate back to a normal rhythm. If it was a big auto accident, your adrenaline is likely surging. Once you feel calmer, you’ll be able to act with control and caution.
DON’T Drive Off
No matter how small you believe the accident was, driving off leaves you open to criminal prosecution and a potential car accident lawsuit. Always stop and assess the situation. And, if you’re scared for some reason, take your foot off the gas and search ‘car accident attorney near me’ instead of speeding off.
DO Call 911
If you or anyone else involved in the accident is unable to move, in pain, or seems dizzy, call 911 for an ambulance. Even if nobody’s hurt, calling the police is a good way to ensure you have an official report for your insurance company. This could be important if there is some kind of car accident settlement too.
DON’T Admit Fault
Many people feel the need to apologize after an auto accident, but even comments you make ‘off the record’ can affect your chances of receiving a car accident settlement.
By all means, talk to the others involved in the accident to get their personal details and check their injuries. But don’t make any kind of statement of fault without seeking advice from a lawyer first. The best car accident attorney will have the necessary experience and knowledge to assess your situation and give you guidance on preparing a statement.
DO Document the Accident
Even if the police are there collecting statements and taking photos, you should always document the accident yourself too. As well as photos of the vehicles involved from all angles, get statements from potential witnesses and the contact details of anyone involved. This kind of information could prove vital if it comes to a car accident settlement.
DON’T Underestimate Your Injuries
One of the most important steps to take after an accident is to get a physical assessment right away. Not all car accident injuries are visible or painful, but many, such as whiplash, can get worse if left untreated. What’s more, insurance companies will often only cover your medical expenses if you seek medical treatment within a certain amount of time.
What to Do After a Car Accident
Right after a car accident you’ll likely feel disoriented. This can cause you to make big mistakes in the moments following a crash.
Luckily, with this information about what to do and what not to do after an auto accident to guide you, you should be a lot clearer on the right steps to take after a crash.
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