According to official stats, around 6.7 million car collisions are reported in the U.S. every year. Being involved in an auto accident can prove traumatic, depending on the injuries sustained. In this guide, we’ll take a look at what you should do when faced with a car accident.
Before anything else, determine whether you or someone else needs urgent medical care. In case of a medical emergency, call 911 at your earliest. When you’re sure everyone is safe, assess the damages caused to your vehicle.
However, do not exit the vehicle without looking back for any approaching vehicles. On major highways, in particular, secondary accidents are a common occurrence, so you might be better off by staying inside your car until the police arrive.
If you do manage to safely exit the vehicle and the involved cars are blocking the traffic, move them out the way to prevent further collisions.
No matter how negligible the collision is, call the police as soon as you can. You must file a legal accident report when the law enforcement personnel arrive. By reporting the incident to the police, you extricate yourself in criminal liability for failing to inform the authorities and document critical information. The step also proves valuable when you proceed to file your insurance claim.
Unless the vehicles are obstructing the traffic, avoid moving them from their position after the accident. Use your smartphone to capture images of the scene, including the vehicles involved, your injuries, the damages caused to your car, and other drivers.
These will serve as valuable evidence when you go on to file your personal injury claim. In the fear and confusion that follows, one can easily forget this critical step. Also, if you can find any witnesses, walk over to them and try to note down their phone numbers and addresses.
Walk over to other drivers who were involved and note down their names, phone numbers, addresses, license plate number, vehicle identification number, insurance information, make and model of the cars involved, and driver’s license number of other drivers.
Regardless of whether you’re at fault, contact your insurance company soon after the collision. Your insurance company will provide valuable information to your attorney about other drivers and their insurances. In the case of uninsured motorist insurance, you will be covered by your own insurance company. To learn about the Illinois insurance requirements, go through this Illinois Car Accident Law.
Also, if you don’t hear from the at-fault driver’s insurance company in a few days, call them yourself and inform them that you’ve been involved in an auto accident with one of their clients.
When it comes to hiring an attorney, Robert T. Edens is the best Cook County car accident lawyer to help you through the claims process. To book a consultation, contact us at your earliest.