The scene of a car accident can often be frightening and cause a person to panic. However, it is important for you to stay calm during this stressful situation. Doing so allows you to remain focused on the problem at hand and handle it to the best of your ability. This can help to ensure the best outcome in the event that you wish to pursue a claim.
There are a number of things that should be done after an accident happens. This can include:
Call the Police
One of the first things that should be done after an accident happens is calling law enforcement. Even if the other party involved tells you not to, it is always beneficial to do so. This is because once they are on the scene, they are able to make sure it is safe by directing other traffic around the wreckage. This protects you and other drivers on the road passing by. In addition to this, officers can draft an official police report, take statements from witnesses, and conduct any chemical tests if they are necessary. This information can be used to file a claim with your insurance company later on.
Do Not Apologize
After an accident, many people believe the right thing to do is to immediately apologize to the other driver. While it is an understandable knee-jerk reaction, it is important to try and avoid doing so. This is because it can sometimes be interpreted as an admission of fault for the accident that happened. Instead of issuing an apology, it is important to be polite and call the necessary emergency services. This allows you to avoid discussing liability entirely.
Photo or Video of the Wreck
If the scene of the accident is secured and safe to walk around, it can be beneficial to take pictures and even videos of the wreck. This allows you to gather evidence of any broken glass, deployed airbags, skid marks, and bloodstains that happened as a result of the accident. Recording any inclement weather or road conditions that may have factored into the accident as well may be useful. This information may assist you in a future claim or lawsuit.
Record Important Details
It is crucial that you do not leave the scene of an accident before gathering all the important information. Even if law enforcement is on the scene, you should not rely on them to do this for you. It is important to do so yourself so that you have all the information that may be necessary for filing a claim. This may consist of the names of witnesses present, their phone numbers, and the registration information of all vehicles involved in the accident.
Seek Medical Attention Immediately
After an accident, you should always seek medical attention. This should be done immediately, even if you feel fine at the moment. This is because it is possible to sustain an injury without realizing and experience symptoms later on. Receiving immediate medical attention can catch an injury you did not realize you had. While emergency responders may be on the scene for, you should still see a doctor afterward. Doing so can give you an official diagnosis. This documents where, why, and what time your injuries happened, which can also be used to file a claim.
Contact our Firm
The law firm of Mattleman, Weinroth & Miller, P.C., is composed of experienced defense attorneys throughout the state of New Jersey. Please contact the office for a free initial consultation and get any questions answered regarding criminal charges and procedures.