If you are ever in the unfortunate position of being involved in a car accident, you may feel somewhat disorientated and have no idea what to do next. For many, adrenaline kicks in, and they go into autopilot mode, whereas others may completely freeze and go into a state of shock.
It is estimated that there are around 10 million car accidents each year in the U.S alone, so knowing how to deal with it could come in handy someday.
1. Call the emergency services
If the collision appears to be quite severe, you should call the emergency services for assistance. Law enforcement officers may need to inspect the scene for evidence of fault and may need to close roads or redirect traffic away from the accident to ensure public safety.
Firefighters or ambulance crews may also be needed if someone has been severely injured or is trapped. If in any doubt, ring 911, and they will advise you on what to do next.
2. Speak to witnesses
Witnesses to the accident could prove invaluable, so if feasible to do so, talk to anyone who saw what happened and take their details. The police will probably do this when they arrive at the scene, but there is no harm in gathering as much information as you can in the meantime.
It may also be useful to take photographs if appropriate to do so. Car insurance companies usually ask for as much evidence as possible so they can determine fault so visual information could work in your favor in the event of a claim being necessary.
3. Talk to a lawyer
If the accident caused you trauma or injury and wasn’t your fault, it’s a good idea to speak to a lawyer about your options as you may be entitled to claim compensation. Although you may not feel up to it, it’s important not to leave it too long before doing so.
According to a highly experienced Bay area injury lawyer, you must file your case within a certain time limit called the “statute of limitations” or your right to sue will be permanently lost. Statutes vary for each type of case and in each state.
4. Ask family and friends for help
Sometimes the aftermath of a car accident can kick in a while after the event took place so, if you are the only adult at home, ask a friend or family member to stay with you for a day or two. Not only will it be good to have some company, but they can also help with tasks such as cooking, cleaning, or even helping out with the kids.
A concussion is quite common following a vehicle collision, so it is never a good idea to be on your own. A car accident can be a traumatizing experience, so having a friendly face around could help to make you feel a lot better.