While there are several things that you can do to avoid being in a car accident—such as remaining focused on the road and obeying the speed limit—you are not in control of the drivers around you. Therefore, every driver needs to be aware of what to do in the event of an accident.
Seek Physical Safety
Immediately after being struck by another vehicle, the first thing you need to do is find a safe area to pull your vehicle over. As a general rule, you should always keep your wheel completely straight unless you are completing a turn. This will prevent you from swerving into oncoming traffic if another car strikes from behind. Following the accident, you need to clear the road to avoid further damage.
Often times, simple two-car fender-benders snowball into massive pileups simply because other cars do not have enough time to avoid the wreck. This puts you and everyone involved in harm’s way, including the vehicles passing you by.
Before you even approach the other driver or take any further action, you need to call 911 or alert the proper authority. When you call emergency services, they will dispatch an officer to the scene of the accident to officially document the situation. Regardless of how minimal or severe your car’s damage may
When you call emergency services, they will dispatch an officer to the scene of the accident to officially document the situation. Regardless of how minimal or severe your car’s damage may might be, you cannot rely on the other driver to present a fair portrayal of the crash. The responding officer will provide you with a police report of the incident, which will detail the collision and help you present your case when it is time to go to court.
Takes Pictures and Swap Information
In a court of law, there is no “hearsay” or assumptions. By documenting your accident with pictures in real-time, it will give the court a better understanding of exactly what happened and how it affected your vehicle. After you call 911 and while you wait for an officer, start taking pictures of your damaged vehicle and the surrounding environment. Take multiple pictures from several different angles to ensure that you properly document the scope of your damages. Then, once a police officer arrives, swap information with the other driver. Make sure that you get their insurance company’s name and policy number, as well as the driver’s name, license plate number, address, phone number, and any other personal information that may be relevant, like who owns the vehicle.
Seek Medical Attention
If you have even the slightest of pains, aches, or soreness as a result of your crash, you need to seek medical attention. When the responding officer arrives, he or she will ask you if you’ve been injured and can arrange medical treatment for you if needed. Taking note of your injuries and seeking needed medical attention is crucial because it will provide concrete evidence of misdoing on the part of the other driver.
Contact an Experienced Attorney
Once you have the other driver’s information, have sought medical attention, and have the necessary documentation of your injuries, the next step you need to take is contacting a trusted attorney. Every car accident is unique, and the details of your case need to be documented by an attorney as soon as possible. Our experienced Yakima, Washington, car accident attorneys at The Pickett Law Firm understand how frightening a car crash can be. We will take you through the process step-by-step to ensure we get a clear understanding of what led to your unfortunate accident. Contact us today to get started.
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