Whether you need a refresher on what to do after you’ve been in a car accident or you’re helping someone as they learn to drive, knowing what to do after an auto accident is extremely important. An all too common reaction after an auto accident is immediate panic, which only compounds the stress of an accident. However, if you can remember the following four tips after you’ve been in a car accident, you will save yourself from unnecessary stress.
1. YOUR HEALTH & SAFETY ARE TOP PRIORITY
If you have ever been in an automobile accident, you understand how easy it is to follow your first gut instinct to hop out of the car and check for damage. However, before exiting the vehicle, it is essential that you make sure you’re not hurt and that the area around your vehicle is safe.
Before you move from your seat, take some deep breaths and get your bearings. Check to make sure you’re not injured and that you’re capable of moving from the vehicle. Even if you initially think you’re not hurt, your adrenaline can prevent you from noticing the pain. This is why it’s important to take a moment to calm down and slow your heart rate down to a normal pace.
Once you’ve established that you’re not injured and are capable of getting out of your vehicle, turn your hazard lights on. And if you have flares, or reflective cones to alert oncoming traffic of the situation, set them out now.
2. TAKE PICTURES OF ALL THE DAMAGES AND THE ACCIDENT SCENE
Documentation of the accident and any damages can be extremely helpful for both insurance purposes and if there’s dispute about who’s responsible for the accident. If you have a camera in your car, or if you have a cell phone with a camera you’ll want to take as many pictures as possible. Be sure to capture any damages on your vehicle, how the cars were originally aligned after the accident, and if you have any visible injuries.
3. GO TO THE HOSPITAL
Even if you feel as if you were never in an accident, you need to be examined by a doctor. By not going to the hospital, you risk ignoring an internal injury that may turn into a more serious issue down the road. Internal injuries usually result when great force is applied to the body, like being in a car accident. Because the symptoms of internal bleeding are not as obvious as other auto accident injuries, going to the hospital following your accident is the most responsible course of action.
4. PROTECT YOURSELF
One of the most important things to remember if you’ve been in an auto accident is to contact a car accident lawyer. By hiring or contacting a lawyer, you can make sure that your rights are protected and that no valuable evidence is destroyed.
Insurance companies will often try to get a statement from you immediately following your accident. However, you want to make sure that you’ve received proper legal advice before you provide any type of statement or information. This will allow you to make sure that the proper statement is made and none of the facts are lost in translation.
Your attorney will also advise you on how to ensure that you are fully compensated for your vehicle and how to go about getting the best medical treatment. Your personal injury lawyer will be by your side every step of the way to make sure everything is properly handled.
GET THE HELP YOU DESERVE
Being in a car accident is a chaotic and stressful time, but personal injury lawyers are here to make sure you get the protection and compensation that you deserve. Contact a lawyer at Cuthbert Law Offices today to get the best attorneys for the job.