The moments right after a car accident can be overwhelming and scary. In the heat of the moment, it can be difficult to remember every step you should take. There are a few things you should do after a car wreck to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you.
The most important thing is to remember to try to stay calm and call 911 immediately. Our auto accident checklist gives you a few more tips, and is helpful to print and keep in your vehicle so that in the event of an automobile accident, you’ll be able to use it to remember the steps to take:
If you are in an auto accident, it’s important to gather information about your wreck.
When you are first involved in an accident it’s important to remember that you should:
1. Stay calm
It’s very difficult not to panic after an auto accident, but try your hardest not to. Maintaining a calm demeanor will help diffuse tense situations and help to avoid conflict. Tension has also been known to further intensify injuries, so maintaining a sense of calm is important.
2. Call 911
Call the police after accidents of any kind, no matter how seemingly “minor”. Having a police report filed is important for a variety of reasons, and especially if you need to file an insurance claim. Make sure you get the police officer’s contact information. Do not allow the other parties involved in a crash to talk you out of calling the police to report the accident.
3. Move your vehicles
If it is safe to do so after a car wreck, move all involved vehicles so that they do not obstruct traffic. If it’s too dangerous to move the vehicles, simply remove yourself and ensure you’re in a safe place while awaiting the authorities. Do not move people who are seriously injured, especially if there are possible spine or head traumas.
4. Exchange information
Make sure you write down the necessary information for drives of other vehicles involved in the crash, as well as witnesses of the crash. Names, phone numbers, driver’s license information, emails and physical addresses are most important. Also gather the name, department and badge number of the police officer filing the accident report, along with the report number.
4. Take pictures
Make sure you take pictures of your car and the other vehicle or vehicles involved so you have documentation of the damage. It can also be helpful to have detailed photos of the accident scene, but please make sure it’s safe to take those photos before doing so. This will greatly help especially if you plan to make a personal injury claim.
We hope this post auto accident checklist and tips help you avoid confusion after a car accident. For more information on what to do after an auto accident, watch this video from Attorney and Partner Chase Swanson.