The sad truth is most of us will be involved in an automobile accident at some point in our lives. Even if you are not injured, there are certain things that you should and should not do.
Stay at the Scene.
If you are in an accident involving bodily injury or substantial damage to property, remain at the accident scene until the police tell you that you can leave. If you are unsure whether the damage or injury is “substantial”, stay there and let the police decide. Leaving the scene of an accident can result in driver’s license sanctions and even criminal charges.
If you are on the roadway, turn your flashers on, or use flares to warn approaching traffic.
Do Not Admit Fault.
Even if you think you are at fault, do not admit liability. There may be factors you are not aware of that played a role in the accident which could determine the other driver was more at fault than you. Therefore, avoid discussing who is at fault in the accident.
Obtain Relevant Information.
In any accident, you should obtain the following information:
The other driver: Name, address, driver’s license number, insurance information and license plate number.
Witnesses: Names, addresses, and telephone numbers.
Police officers: Ask the police officer(s) who investigate the traffic scene to provide you with a business card and an “incident number”.
The location: You may wish to take notes about (and/or pictures) where the accident happened; the road conditions, speed limits, traffic control devices, the weather, and the lighting.
The accident: If possible take notes about how the accident occurred, such as the direction of travel of the vehicles involved and what the cars were doing at the time of the collision.
Be aware that if litigation results from the accident, you may have to share your notes with the all parties involved in the suit.
If You Are Injured, Accept On-Scene Medical Treatment or See a Doctor As Quickly As Possible.
Don’t take chances with your health. If there is a possibility you may have been injured in the accident, accept medical treatment. It is better to be safe than sorry.
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