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5 Actions to Take After Car Accident

ca-5There are five actions to take after a car accident. These five steps will help the process move along smoothly so that you can quickly get back to normal life.

As difficult as it may be when you are involved in a collision, do your best to remain calm.  By remaining calm, you will be in a better position to manage the situation.

Here are the steps to take immediately:

1- Check and see if anyone is so badly injured that immediate medical attention is needed.  Call an ambulance if necessary.

2- If possible, move the cars out of traffic to reduce the risk of another car accident from taking place.  It’s good to take photos and make a quick sketch of the location of the vehicles if you can.  This is important since the position of the vehicles can help determine who’s at fault.

Don’t Overpay for Auto Insurance. Get Cheap Rates. When the cars are too badly damaged to move, turn on hazard lights.  Ideally, one of the vehicles has a safety kit that includes cones or flares to set out around the perimeter of the accident.  If not, improvise to protect the site until the police and ambulance arrive.

3- Telephone to report the accident.  It’s best to file a police report, even if the other party resists the idea.  No matter how agreeable they seem to be at the scene of the accident, if a police report isn’t filed, you could end up in small claims court.  If the accident is minor, the police may take your report over the phone instead of sending an officer.

4- Always contact your insurance agent when you have an accident.  Even if you don’t file a claim, you will want to discuss the incident with your agent.  A good agent can help you decide when it’s better to pay out of pocket than to use your insurance.

You might initially decide not to file a claim but the situation may change.  If you decided not to file a police report, ask about your state’s Department of Motor Vehicle forms and reporting requirements. If you have been in a hit and run, or you find out that the other party is uninsured or underinsured your own policy will cover damage to your auto.

5-  Exchange information with the other drivers who were involved.  Get their driver’s license, VIN number and insurance information.  Also get contact information from anyone at the scene who witnessed the car accident.

Only share contact information with the other drivers. Don’t engage in conversation about who’s at vault.  When the police arrive, they will take care of that.  Get as much information as possible about the other driver.  If the vehicle is registered to someone other than the driver, it’s vitally important to get contact information about the owner, in addition to the driver.

No matter how minor, having a car accident is always a negative experience.  Having the right auto coverage with a strong company that offers good customer service can make a bad situation better.