What to Do After a Car Accident
Car accidents can happen in a blink of an eye. Although you may be a careful driver, it is hard to predict what a negligence or careless driver may do. Motor vehicle accidents can be traumatic and they could leave you feeling overwhelmed. We are here to remind you that you are not alone and you don't have to navigate the personal injury process on your own. In fact, dealing with the insurance companies is probably the last thing you want to do if you are suffering with a car accident injury. If you or someone you love has been injured in an automobile accident, then contact our Oklahoma City personal injury lawyer here at Clemens Blair Kitch to find out what to do next. In the meantime, here is a list of helpful tips of what to do after a car accident.
Try to stay calm and collected- If you take out your anger or frustration on the other driver or drivers involved, it will only stir up unnecessary conflict. It is also important for you wellbeing that you take it easy, especially until you are examined by a doctor for any possible injuries.
Don't discuss the issue of fault in detail- Before you talk with your attorney, it is important that you talk about the case on a limited basis, only discussing the facts with the police and insurance companies. You should not start throwing out blame and if you think it was your fault, do not tell that to anyone at the scene of the accident. You should also refrain from signing any formal documents before speaking with your car accident lawyer, unless it is for police business.
Call 911 and notify the police of the accident- It is very important that you call in the accident and alert officials, especially if someone has been injured. You should always call an ambulance just to be on the safe side. Even if the accident was minor, by calling the police you can be sure that a police report will be filed and that can be used as evidence in case you need to file a lawsuit.
Pull over out of the way of traffic- Many additional injuries happen after people pull over after an accident. If you are not in a safe, low-traffic area, you always run the risk of an oncoming car hitting someone as you are outside your vehicle inspecting the damage. Be sure that your cars are in a safe place out of the way of traffic.
Put your hazard lights on- When you are stopped on the side of the road, you need to do everything to protect yourself and alert other drivers as to what is going on. By putting on your hazard lights people will know to slow down and exercise caution.
Be sure to get the other driver's information- Get the name, registration and insurance information from the other driver(s) involved in the accident. If the name of the driver does not match the car's registration, then be sure to ask them how they are related to that person. You can also check to make sure they have an active driver's license.
Take pictures of any vehicle or property damage- In order to preserve all the evidence before it is wipe out, take pictures both your vehicle and the scene of the accident. Look for skid marks on the asphalt and any areas of impact that can help you prove your case. You should also document your injuries and seek immediate medical attention.
Take down notes regarding the accident- Write down everything that you remember while it is still fresh in your mind. This way your story doesn't change over time. You should also see if there were any witnesses who saw the accident happen- if so, you should write down their testimonies of what they saw.
Make sure that your insurance company is notified- You Oklahoma City personal injury lawyer can handle this portion. Our legal team can inform them of the accident and give them any information that they need. It is always best if you refrain from giving a formal statement, because insurance companies could twist your words around and try to ruin your chances of obtaining compensation.