If you’re unlucky enough to be involved in a car accident – no matter how minor or serious – you need to know what to do. It’s not a nice thought, but vehicular accidents happen and being prepared and knowing how to act can save you a lot of time, money, and stress.
If you take the right steps as soon as your accident happens, you can prevent an already bad situation from getting worse. Failing to act properly can even result in civil or criminal charges being brought against you. If you are the owner of a car, this information is vital.
#1: Stop Immediately
It does not matter how minor the accident is or you think it is, you must stop. Immediately. Failing to stop after a car accident, even if it’s only a minor scrape, is a criminal offense and you will get into serious trouble for it. You could even lose your driving license.
Some people panic when they get into an accident and take off. Doing this only makes the already bad situation even worse and will cost you more in the long-term. Whether the accident was your fault or not, you should immediately stop and deal with the situation. If you can, pull to the side of a road or into a safer place and take it from there.
#2: Call the Authorities
The police always need to be informed when there’s been a car accident, even if it’s only a small one. Take a look around you and properly assess the situation. Has anybody been hurt? Has any fuel leaked, or are there any flames anywhere?
Figuring out how bad the situation is can help you call the relevant authorities. Granted, the emergency dispatcher will be able to assist you with this, but it is always a good idea to have an idea of the gravity of the situation, so you can properly explain when you call the emergency services.
If you see other people calling the emergency services, then avoid doing it yourself; there is no need to clog up the phonelines with multiple calls.
#3: Contact Your Lawyer
The legal ramifications of a car accident are quite serious, and you should notify your attorney immediately. If you don’t have one, call on a specialist Chicago car accident lawyer to help you resolve the situation and sort out the insurance problems.
If you have been injured, even if only slightly, you may be entitled to compensation, too, and specialist car accident lawyers are the best people for the job of helping you get what is rightfully yours. Car accidents can have a serious physical and emotional toll, and a little financial boost can help you recover much quicker.
Most people who own a vehicle will be involved in some type of accident in their lives; it’s the reality of being on the road. By preparing yourself for it, you can get ahead much quicker when it happens.