More than 6 million car accidents occur in the US each year, according to the latest statistics. These can cause severe injuries, property damage, and may even be fatal for those involved. The state of Arkansas is no stranger to traffic accidents. Reckless driving has contributed to an alarming number of car crashes, a lot of which have proven to be fatal.
In many cases, individuals who weren’t responsible for the accident are the ones who have to live with the consequences. Here’s what you should do if you find yourself in a car accident that wasn’t your fault.
Ensure Your Safety
The first thing you need to do after an accident occurs is to ensure your safety. Switch off the engine of your vehicle and adjust the gears so that it’s no longer moving. Alternately, steer your vehicle toward the curb so as to avoid traffic.
Next, evaluate your own condition as well as of your vehicle’s. Take a moment to catch your breath and process what has just happened. Then, do a quick but thorough examination of your surroundings. Are you injured? Has your vehicle been damaged? Is something threatening your safety (e.g., smoke coming from the engine)? Assess the situation and call 911 to report the incident.
Now that you’ve ensured you’re not in any immediate danger, it’s time to gather the information required to file for an injury or insurance claim. You’ll have to talk to the driver responsible for the accident and note down their details. These include:
- The driver’s full name and contact details
- The driver’s license information
- The driver’s license plate
- Models of the vehicles involved in the accident
- The location where the accident occurred
- Time of the accident
- Witness details and accounts
- The name and badge number of police officers
It’s also advisable to note down the extent of the damage caused. For instance, if you’ve sustained injuries or vehicle damage, or if other passengers have been harmed, keep a record of it. Similarly, if another property has been damaged, it’s important to document that piece of information as well. You may use your phone’s camera for documenting things at this point.
Do NOT sign any documents or forms at this stage!
Double-Check for Injuries
Once you have collected the relevant information and informed the authorities, double-check for injuries. This is important because sometimes the signs of an injury sustained may not be obvious, but may appear after a while. For instance, you may not have noticed the gruesome tear at the side of your arm until your sleeve stained red.
Either way, it’s best to seek medical assistance soon after the incident even if you don’t seem to think you’re injured.
Hire a car accident attorney today in N. Little Rocks, Arkansas! Lisa Douglas is an auto accident attorney who can help you file a personal injury claim.
Call The Law Offices of Lisa Douglas today for more details!