The average driver will experience an estimated three to four car accidents in their lifetime. These accidents can range from minor fender benders to deadly collisions, and even seasoned drivers may find themselves wondering what to do when an accident occurs. Taking the proper steps immediately after an accident can minimize the damage done and help accident victims recover losses.
The first and most important thing to do immediately after an accident is to check whether anyone has been injured. Drivers should check in with everyone in their car, then with the other car and any bicyclists or pedestrians that may have been involved. If anyone needs medical attention, assessing the situation quickly can help get them the care that they need to prevent further injury. Once this assessment has taken place, the vehicles should be moved off the road and out of harm’s way while waiting for help to arrive.
It is important to call 911 as soon as an accident occurs. When police arrive on scene, they will evaluate the crash site and take statements from witnesses. Those involved in the accident should answer questions honestly, but drivers should not prematurely apologize or take responsibility for the accident. They should, however, take down the officer’s name and badge number so that they can follow up and obtain a copy of the police report. If police do not come to the scene of the accident, drivers should file an accident report on their own with local law enforcement and, if needed, the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Drivers should exchange information, including name, contact information, insurance company, and policy number. They will need to be in touch when filing claims with their respective insurance companies. It is not necessary to discuss the accident or assign blame; again, this will be determined by the evidence.
When filing a claim, the more documentation, the better. Drivers should take photos of the damage to both cars and be sure to capture the make, model, and license plate number of the other driver’s vehicle. It is important to have a detailed record of the circumstances of the accident, as well as any injuries that occurred as a result, as this can go a long way to make the process of recovering damages smoother. Injured drivers and passengers should consult with an attorney as soon as possible, and before giving any written or recorded statements to any insurance representative.
If you have been seriously injured or suffered the wrongful death of a loved one in an auto accident, call the Cherry Hill car accident lawyers at Williams Cedar. Our dedicated personal injury lawyers have been successfully representing auto accident victims for decades, and we will prepare a sound legal strategy to get you the maximum compensation to which you are entitled. With offices conveniently located in Haddonfield and Philadelphia, we help accident victims and their families throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Call us today at 215-557-0099 or 856-470-9777 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation with a seasoned South Jersey car accident lawyer.