Here are 6 steps you should know if you have a car accident:
1. Check to make sure everyone is ok. If anyone is injured, seek medical assistance right away. Do not attempt to move someone with neck or back injuries unless a worse hazard is present.
2. Move to a safe location. If you are in a minor collision, you should move the vehicles and yourselves to a safe location out of the roadway. In a major collision where damage to the vehicle prevents it from being moved or if moving it would cause additional damage, make sure that you are out of the way of traffic and in a safe place.
3. Document the collision and person(s) involved. You should exchange information with the other driver(s), passengers, and witnesses. Do not provide financial information or your social security number. Be sure to collect names, phone numbers, addresses, vehicle information, and insurance information.
4. Take pictures of the scene and damage. Take pictures of the scene, persons involved, and vehicle damage if it is safe to do so. It is often helpful to also get a picture of the license plates as well as the intersection signs and markings.
5. If police are present, get their information too. Often in minor collisions, police are not needed at the scene. If you are unsure, call the police and ask for a report to be written. When the police are there for a report, be sure to get their name, badge number, and a copy of the report. Sometimes the report will be available online within 48 hours and you will receive instructions on how to view the report at that time.
6. Contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Your insurance company will review the information and help you with next steps.
Being involved in a car accident can be a stressful, scary experience. Being prepared can help you during that time of stress. You should make sure that you have your current information readily available and organized. Keep your vehicle registration, insurance information, extra paper, and a pen or pencil in your glove box organized and current.
After the accident, you may have additional questions for your insurance agent such as where to get your vehicle fixed or what to expect with your future premiums. We are here to help. Please call or email InsureUse with your questions.