Getting in a car accident can be one of the most unnerving moments in a person’s life. The unexpected has just happened. If you’re lucky, no one has been injured; but then comes all of the aggro that is part of being in any accident: filing police reports and insurance claims, getting your car fixed or replaced, and maybe even getting a lawyer.
There’s so much to consider after a car accident. Here are 6 important things to remember:
- Don’t drive or run away from the scene — you could be arrested simply for leaving, even if it’s minor. If your car is still operable, drive it off to the side of the road and out of traffic. If you can’t safely drive it, put your hazard lights on and leave it to a tow truck. If you can safely get out of your car, you should do so; if not, don’t force it – wait for assistance as you may need medical attention or help from the fire brigade.
- Are you, or is anyone else in your car, injured? How about in the other car? If you think someone needs urgent medical help you should call for an ambulance immediately. Sometimes shock and adrenaline can mask the injury so you may feel fine until a few hours later, or even days later. If this is the case we advise a visit to the GP or the hospital.
- It’s a good idea to jot down some notes of the event or take pictures if you can. Take them as soon as you can without getting in the way of the police. Also, getting some video footage of the scene could be useful to show all angles of visible damage.
- You should call the police even if you don’t think anybody is hurt. You should tell the police exactly what happened however If you’re not sure or you don’t know the facts, just say that you’re unsure. It’s normal to be confused after an accident, especially if it’s traumatic. The police will organise traffic control, talk to witnesses, collect evidence and file a report that will help both drivers with their insurance claims.
- If the police aren’t involved with the accident or don’t arrive at the scene, you should still get details of everyone involved. Limit your discussion of the accident and do not admit any fault or liability but make sure you get their name, phone number and address. You also need their insurance company name and insurance company policy number.
- What happens if you’re charged with a traffic offence? Whether it’s a speeding fine, drink driving, driving while unlicensed or disqualified, or any other traffic offence – you’ll need a good lawyer. Someone like Marsh Blom Lawyers could work as they are led by ex-police prosecutors who know exactly what it takes to minimize your fines, disqualification periods or prison sentence. They may even be able to help you leave without any charge at all.
These are the key things you need to do to make sure you are protected incase of an incident.