Chances are, you have driven by the scene of an accident. It can be a lot to take in, even as an outsider. Glass on the road, emergency medical technicians tending to the injured, police directing traffic, and gathering information. It can seem chaotic. Now, imagine that you were one of the people involved in that accident. It can be easy to understand how overwhelmed those people are feeling. In addition to being overwhelming, an accident can be disorienting, leaving you dazed and likely unclear as to what you should do next. We want to go through some of the things you should do following a car accident in the hopes that, should you ever find yourself in such a situation, you can fall back on this information to guide you through the chaos.
What to Do After You Are In A Car Accident
After a car accident, it is important to stay calm. We realize this is much easier said than done. Try your best. Take deep breaths. Calm yourself and orient yourself. Take stock of how you are feeling. What follows next will largely depend on the nature and extent of your injuries. Regardless, however, you should proceed with caution so as not to potentially exacerbate any injuries you may have sustained in the accident.
Call 911 right away. Police will be dispatched to the accident scene as will emergency medical care, such as an ambulance. Ambulance workers will be able to tend to any injury victims and provide emergency transport, should it be necessary, from the accident scene to the hospital for immediate medical attention. Police will be able to contain the accident scene and keep it safe from other vehicles on the road. Additionally, the police will evaluate the accident scene, gather information from those involved as well as any potential witnesses, and an official accident report will be generated as a result. An accident report is likely to be a key piece of evidence should you proceed in filing a personal injury claim following the accident.
If you are able to, take pictures of the accident scene. Take pictures of the property damage sustained as well as any visible physical injuries you may have sustained. Pictures can be powerful and compelling pieces of evidence to try and encapsulate the damage sustained in a motor vehicle accident. You should also try to get the names and contact information from witnesses to the accident should you need corroboration for what actually occurred. You will also need to contact your insurance company to inform them of the accident and help ensure you have immediate access to benefits.
The most important thing to do after an accident, however, is to get the medical care you need and to do so as soon as possible. You may only feel sore. You may tell yourself that you must not be that hurt and you do not need to get evaluated by a medical professional. Go and get checked out. This is a better safe than sorry scenario. The full extent of accident injuries can take days to fully present themselves. Getting emergency medical care can help prevent exacerbation of injuries you may not even be aware of yet. Furthermore, getting emergency medical care and complying with doctor-recommended follow-up care is crucial to preserving and protecting your personal injury claim. Medical evidence will be of paramount importance in supporting any assertion that you were injured in a crash.