Getting into a car accident is always a daunting experience -no matter how much prepared you are, or whether you are insured or not.
According to WHO infographics on road safety facts, nearly 1.25 million people die in road crashes each year, which makes it 3,287 deaths a day on average. Unfortunately, car accidents can be pretty much devastating. From damaging your precious hard earned car to the injuries suffered through. Even if the accident is of small scale, the least that can happen is; you are late to work or wherever you intended to go. And, of course, now your day is absolutely ruined also.
For this very reason, we have brought you a list of steps to follow through -from getting to a safe place to finding the right car accident orthopedic doctor– if you encounter a road-mobile accident (god forbid!) and save yourself the trouble.
Keep Your Nerves Calm
Staying calm and keeping your wits about is always the most essential thing in any dire situation. If you’ve lost your cool, handling the car accident would be nearly impossible.
What you need to do first is to assess the situation smartly and quickly. First, check whether you are alright or not. Is there anyone around who needs immediate assistance and help? Are you in any condition to provide help? And then proceed accordingly.
Get to a Safe Place Asap
To begin with, let me be clear -getting to a safe place doesn’t mean fleeing from the accident scene. Never do it. No matter how minor an accident is. In fact, leaving the accident scene in case of severe injuries suffered by the other party can make you liable to the criminal penalty, including being charged with hit and run case.
As soon as you are able to move, pulling over the side of the road if your car is blocking the traffic and is a hazard in any way, is perfectly fine. You also have to keep your engine turned off and turn on the hazard lights or flashers to have sufficient lighting to not cause further damage.
However, if your car is a total wreck, it’s better to remove yourself from the vehicle and get to a safe place as soon as possible.
Look For Injuries On Yourself And Your Passengers
Prioritizing your own and your loved ones’ safety is the best thing you can do during a road traffic accident. Look for any kind of injury on yourself. Further, if you are able to move, assess the condition of your passengers along with the other party involved.
Call the emergency services and ask for immediate medical help, if there are any injured present.
Until the help arrives, take care to not move the injured person unless their neck is secured with a cervical collar -especially if the person is suffering from neck pain or headache.
Exchange Contact And Insurance Info With The Other Involved Party
After making sure that everyone involved in the accident is alright, your next step should be to exchange some vital information regarding name, contact number, and insurance info with the other driver. This will help you in getting a fair settlement after.
You should ask for other driver’s,
- Full name, contact number, and address
- Driver’s license number and license plate number
- Insurance information (especially insurance company and policy number)
Though, remember that getting into a brawl over whose fault was the accident is useless. You don’t even need to apologize, as you might be held accountable for every word you say later.
Call The Police And File a Report
Always, call the police! Whether the accident is large scale or a minor crash. Calling the police and filing report right away after the accident -even if you are at fault-, may give you some leeway in case of any false accusations and claims. Moreover, the police report might also help you in ascertaining the liability by the insurance company.
Police might arrive immediately at the accident scene and record the whole accident accordingly, or they may ask you to file the accident report at a near station.
Howbeit, in any case, don’t forget to ask for the name and badge number of all the responding officers.
Inform Your Insurance Company
Call your insurance company as soon as possible and inform them of the whole situation. Calling them at the accident scene is better, as you can ask for any specific requirements and documentation they will be needing from you and that you can produce only at the scene.
Be honest and explain everything in clear words. Further, stick to the facts only, and try to keep the exaggeration to the minimum.
See A Car Accident Orthopedic Doctor Asap
Now comes the part that is often ignored. You might think that everything is alright with you when your adrenaline rush is masking it all, especially if there are no visible injuries. Hidden car accident injuries can be detrimental to your health, and may cause chronic ailments and impairments.
Visiting a specialized car accident orthopedic doctor right after the accident can protect you from many of the potential damages to not only your body but also to your pocket.
Document The Whole Accident And Medical Treatments Received
You’ll want to document the whole accident in case your insurance company asks for it to support your claim. This also includes your medical records associated with the accident, as your health insurance may require it.
For this, you’ll have to:
- Request for a copy of the police report from the responding officer.
- Take all the necessary pictures, including the condition and the license plates of both cars.
- Talk to the witnesses and get their contact information.
- Note down how much time and expenditure you have spent on traveling and doctor’s appointments.
- Keep detailed notes of absolutely everything.
Accidents are traumatizing events. Although you can never prepare enough for them, knowing what to do and having everything straighten out already never hurts. May God save us all!