Unfortunately, the odds of you getting in a car accident are against you. More than 6 million car accidents happen each year in the United States. About half of those result in serious injuries and a third of those injuries will become permanent. Some of the most common causes of fatal accidents include alcohol (40%), speeding (30%), and reckless driving (33%).
Distracted driving is a rising concern with vehicle accidents as well. Every day, nine people are killed in car accidents in the United States due to distracted driving, such as cell phone use. Another 1,060 per day are injured in these accidents.
Knowing the risks associated with car accidents can help you avoid them. You can be a good defensive driver, and you probably try to be. However, even if you’re the best driver in the world, you could still become a victim of an accident—you can’t control the actions of other drivers, after all.
Therefore, you should know what to do if you’re in a car accident. Taking the right steps afterward can help you recover more quickly and avoid serious financial hardship.
Here are some things to do.
1. Seek Medical Attention
Often, injuries worsen the longer it takes to attend to them, especially if the victim is losing blood. It’s absolutely critical that paramedics are called, and you receive treatment for injuries to ensure a better recovery.
Even if you don’t think you’re seriously hurt, and an ambulance is not called to the scene of the accident, it’s still a good idea to get a checkup. Sometimes, injuries sustained in an accident aren’t detectable right away. For example, you might not realize you have whiplash until your neck is sore the next day. A doctor may be able to diagnose and treat medical issues sooner.
2. Contact an Attorney
If you were in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you may be in line for compensation for your injuries, damages to your vehicle, and even missed work. An attorney can help evaluate your case and determine if you have a good chance of winning a personal injury case.
Many car accident victims don’t contact an attorney to seek legal compensation because they feel guilty doing so. However, it’s not about revenge—it’s about enabling you to return your life to normalcy, or close to it.
3. Call Your Insurance
Your insurance is another vital entity to contact. They will handle much of the communication between you and the other party, as well as the payout for vehicle repairs.
Insurance companies do not like to learn about an accident well after it’s happened. If you’re pretty sure you’re going to need expensive repairs, it’s best to call your insurance company right away. Your rates may go up depending on the situation, but it’s much better than trying to foot the bill on your own.
4. Keep a Record of the Accident
Your insurance company or attorney may request records of the accident. If you have the presence of mind to do so, take photos afterward. Write down everything you remember when you get home while the accident is still fresh in your mind.
It’s also a good idea to get a record of the driver, just in case of scammers.
Another essential aspect of recording the accident is filing a police report. Often, police are not called to the scene because they didn’t seem necessary. However, to avoid scams, a police report and documentation will prevent false claims against you.
Time is of the essence following a car accident, particularly if there were serious injuries or damages involved. Knowing what to do ahead of time will help you navigate the difficulties afterward so you can move on.
Article Submitted By Community Writer