Being involved in a car accident is traumatic at the best of times, but it is even worse when it wasn’t your fault and especially if you didn’t see it coming. One of my biggest fears is being rear-ended with my baby in the car, I’m sure it is for all parents driving with their children. If you are ever involved in a collision that isn’t your fault, here are 5 things you should do straight away.
1. Assess Your Injuries
As soon as the initial shock has dissipated to a level where you’re back in control of your own body, do a quick assessment to check your injuries if you’re alone in your vehicle – wiggle your toes, sway in your seat and gently try and move your head. If any of these movements hurt, then stop and just stay still while you wait for help to arrive.
2. Assess Everyone Else’s Injuries
If you can and it is safe to do so, move your vehicles out of the flow of traffic once you have taken photographs of their positions. Now that everyone is no longer at risk of further injuries, assess the injuries of the other parties involved in the car accident. If anyone needs medical care, call an ambulance as well as the police.
3. Document Evidence
Take as many photographs of the scene of the accident as you can. Contact an attorney with as much evidence and information as possible so they can assist you with your claims suit. If possible, avoid talking to the guilty party – you can make sure they aren’t badly injured but do not discuss the accident or who was at fault, it is much safer to let the lawyers and the insurance assessors do their jobs to assign blame.
4. Get Someone to Drive You Home
Even if your car is not badly damaged and it is still driveable, you need to rather let someone you trust drive you home. You will still be in shock and your mind and body will still be processing what happened, this will affect your reaction time and could cause another accident and this time you would be at fault. Avoid any extra drama by letting someone else drive you home and when you get there you can have a relaxing cup of tea to calm your nerves.
5. Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company
You need to report the accident to your insurance company even if you were not at fault. Your insurance company will require you to submit a report and they will assign an assessor to investigate the accident. This is where you will need to provide them with as much evidence and documentation as possible, as well as the details of the driver who was at fault. Insurance companies deal with these kinds of claims daily, so leave the rest up to them. You can send them all the photos you took at the scene to help them understand what happened to cause the accident in the first place.