As an Arlington TX car accident lawyer, there are a few things you need to know about handling an accident:
First, Make Sure Everyone is Okay and Call The Police
People may be shaken up and there is a rush of adrenaline immediately following a car accident. It’s important to assess everyone involved. Ask if anyone is injured. Visually check everyone for any noticeable injuries. Don’t forget to check yourself, as well. You should be fully in control of yourself if you are going to help anyone else. Adrenaline can hide the pain – be cautious.
Are you and your passengers still in harm’s way? It is important that you pull your car over and get out of the way of oncoming traffic. Many, many fatalities occur immediately following a minor accident. Get completely off the road, if you can, for safety. If you cannot move your car, call the 911 and wait for help.
Once everyone is assessed for injuries and you are out of harm’s way, call the police and alert them of the accident, where it happened, if anyone is hurt, and the type of injuries, if known.
Stay Calm and Do Not Admit Fault
Car accidents happen daily, but it is still a scary situation. Remember to stay calm. If you are injured, ask for help. Do not get angry at any other drivers. Do not discuss the car accident or how the car accident occurred. Focus on making sure everyone is safe and getting information for later. Avoid accepting fault. You may not know who was actually at fault or the intentions of the other party. Let a skilled car accident lawyer or car accident investigator review the facts and state driving laws.
Record the Details
Write down all relevant information. You’ll likely need to make note of the following:
- name of all drivers and passengers;
- driver’s license numbers of any drivers;
- make, model, and license plate numbers of the cars;
- witnesses names and contact information;
- date, place, and time of the car accident;
- insurance providers and policy numbers of all drivers; and
- a diagram of how the car accident occurred.
Take Photos If You Can
Use your smartphone or a camera if you have one. Photograph the driver’s licenses and insurance cards of any and all vehicles involved. Take photos of other drivers and passengers. Take detailed photos and video of the accident and the damage resulting from the accident. You may also want to photograph the surrounding area. All of this information may be helpful for insurance adjusters and car accident lawyers.
Finally, Visit a Doctor If You Are Injured
Avoid settling your case or accepting any money until you have been completely evaluated by a medical professional. You may not know the full extent of your medical needs until you’ve consulted with a doctor, thus you won’t likely know how much you’re rightfully owed.
If you have questions or wish to speak to someone who can help, contact an experienced car accident lawyer to go over your options.
Thanks to our friend and blog author, Brandy Austin of Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC, for her insight into what to do after an accident.