When you’re involved in a car accident, the minutes immediately following the incident can be very emotional. It is critical to keep your cool though, as there are important things you need to do at the scene of the accident, and shortly afterward. We know that in the post-accident chaos it can be difficult to think straight, which is why we recommend printing out the following list of items, and storing them in your car just in case.
Do Not Leave the Scene
Never leave the scene of an accident before it is safe to do so, or before being cleared by any police on the scene. Leaving the scene of an accident, especially one where somebody has been injured or killed, can have very serious repercussions and criminal penalties.
Check on the Vehicle’s Occupants
The first step after a car accident should always be checking on the condition of all occupants within the vehicle. Call for medical attention for anybody who needs it, and do not move a person who is unconscious or has neck and back pain unless there is an imminent safety hazard.
Call the Police
If there is injury or significant property damage, you need to make sure the police are called. As that a police report be filed, and record the names and badge numbers of the responding officers for your records.
In the event of a multi-car accident, get the names, phone numbers, addresses, drivers’ license numbers, license plate numbers, and insurance information of the other party involved. If there are passengers in the other vehicle, obtain their names, phone numbers, and addresses as well. Always try and keep your cool when talking to other drivers.
Photograph any damage to your vehicle or property as soon as possible after an accident. This sort of evidence helps your insurance company determine the proper compensation for the damage to your vehicle, and can help in court. Having pictures available of your vehicle before it was damaged can help create a helpful contrast to show the extent of the damage sustained.
Hire an Attorney
If any injuries were sustained, or your vehicle was badly damaged, it’s best to consult with an experienced law firm like Lanzotti & Rau. An experienced attorney can help recover the maximum amount possible if you are injured or better defend you if you are found to be at fault. We understand how stressful and traumatic a car accident can be, and we would be honored if you would allow us to help you in your time of need. Contact us today at 573-335-9300 today!