It happens to almost everyone: you’re driving along when suddenly, out of nowhere, another vehicle crashes into yours. The jarring event sends shockwaves through your body and you’re unsure of what to do next.
It is estimated a driver will be involved in at least one accident every 18 years. As a result, most drivers will be involved in a minimum of one accident in their lifetime, if not more. While you can’t necessarily prepare for impact, you can prepare for what do after it happens.
Preparing for Danger
As previously noted, you cannot prepare for the impact of a crash, but there are ways you can prepare for the possibility of an accident. Having a roadside assistance kit that includes flares, warning triangles, and some first aid items is important. You may also want to invest in a seatbelt cutter or car hammer should an emergency arise and you need one.
You should always keep important information like vehicle registration, insurance cards, and a list of emergency contacts in the glove compartment where it can easily be reached.
Immediately After the Accident
When an accident happens, crash injuries may be severe and emotions are likely to run high. By knowing what to do, you can keep yourself and your passengers protected.
Stay at the Scene
You should never leave the scene of an accident. Even if an accident seems minor, you can face charges for a hit-and-run.
You should call 911 to report the accident, and relay if someone needs medical attention.
Be Cautious When Reporting What Happened
When police arrive, be cautious about reporting what happened. You should not blame anyone, not even yourself, for the crash. Only state the facts of what occurred.
Take Your Own Notes & Photos
If possible, write down important information such as the location of the accident, the other driver’s contact and insurance information, and contact information for any witnesses. Take photos of the scene of the accident and if possible, take photos of your injuries.
Inform your Insurer
You should notify your insurer as soon as possible about the accident.
Contact a Chiropractor
Contact a chiropractor to schedule an appointment and get medical treatment for your injuries. Whether you did or did not visit a hospital for your injuries, a chiropractor can help you continue to heal from your car accident injuries.
Keep Track of Medical Records
If you need medical treatment, keep track of the medical providers you see, from doctors to chiropractors, and the treatments you’re receiving.
Do Not Sign Any Documents You Do Not Understand
You may need to sign the police report, but be wary of other documents that may be presented to you that you do not understand or do not agree with.
This information should be shared with loved ones as they can also help if you are unable to take photos or notes, inform your insurer, or contact a chiropractor. The steps you take after an accident can be crucial for both your health and legal rights.