What to Do at the Scene of a Car Accident?

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The scene of a car accident can be a confusing and painful situation, but here are the key things you should do immediately after!

What you say and do after your car accident greatly affects how your case will proceed, what types of damages you can recover, and how much. Car accident attorney Timothy J. Ryan warns that saying the wrong thing, becoming aggressive, or denying medical treatment can negatively harm your case. 

Follow the steps below to limit your liability and ensure that you follow the law. 

Call 911

When you have been in an accident, assess yourself and any passengers in your car. If you have suffered severe injuries, then you should call 911 immediately. If you can safely get out of your car and away from the scene of a car accident, then you should go check on the other driver and passengers in their vehicle. 

messed up car

When the police arrive, they will ask you for a statement so they can write a report. Make sure you get a copy of the police report so that you can provide it to your attorney and the insurance company later on.

Exchange Contact Information

You should exchange names, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, driver’s license numbers, and auto insurance information with the other driver(s) involved. You should also get the contact information for injured passengers and witnesses of the accident. 

You do not need to get auto insurance information or licenses from passengers or witnesses. If you are driving a car, or a commercial truck, or even an RV, you still need to follow all the steps provided. Including sharing information!

Take Pictures

Photos and videos are some of the strongest pieces of evidence you can have in any personal injury case. To maximize their usefulness in your case, you should take as many photos as possible of the accident site before the authorities remove the cars and from as many angles as you can safely shoot. Be sure to include the license plates, traffic signs, and street signs in your photos. 

Document obstructions or any other factors that may have contributed to your crash. The entire scene of a car accident should be photographed.

Go To The Emergency Room

Whether you notice injuries right away or not, you should always get checked by a doctor after any sort of accident. They can assess whether or not you have suffered serious injuries, particularly the insidious ones that don’t hurt right away but can lead to life-threatening complications later.

Internal bleeding, for example, takes hours before a victim notices, but a doctor will be able to order diagnostic testing to rule out this and other serious injuries.

Contact A Personal Injury Attorney

After taking care of your immediate medical needs, you should contact a personal injury attorney to help you with the next steps. You can recover compensation for your damages from the at-fault party’s insurance company, but you will need to establish liability first.

A personal injury attorney investigates your case and speaks to the insurance company for you while you recover.

What Should I Avoid Doing After a Car Accident?

You should stay at the scene of the accident no matter what, in accordance with state law. Leaving the site of the accident is against the law.

If you don’t seek medical treatment immediately, then the insurance company will suspect that your injuries were not that serious and that you are filing a claim for financial gain. To have the strongest case possible and to prioritize your health, you should seek medical treatment within two weeks of the accident.

Do not apologize for the accident, and do not blame the other driver. If you get into a confrontation with the other driver, then the responding police officer will note the aggression, which can hurt your case. Don’t treat the site of the accident like a courtroom. Instead, contact a personal injury attorney.

Get The Help you Need Now

You can get free help at an initial consultation with car accident attorney Timothy J. Ryan. He can advise you of your rights under California personal injury law and represent you so that you focus on your health and recovery. Call 714-908-9069 today to get started on recovering the damages from your car accident.

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John Miller

John Miller is a cars enthusiast who loves writing anything related to automobiles. He is a passionate blogger writing for innovatecar.com and other auto blogs