Accidents happen – especially traffic accidents.
With the winter season all but upon us, traffic accidents are, unfortunately, all but inevitable. While we may do our best to prevent such events from occurring, the icy roads and low visibility that winter brings, along with the unpredictability of other drivers, are out of our control.
In the unfortunate event that you are involved in a traffic accident, whether one in which you are at fault for or not, it is important that you understand how to handle the situation. To prepare you for the possibility, we have outlined what to do if you’ve gotten in an accident.
First Things First:
1. STOP right there… Thank you very much.
Most of you are probably thinking: what?
What we mean is – do not leave the scene of the accident. If you are at fault and you leave the scene of the accident, you’ve just committed a hit and run. Even for the most minor of accidents this does not look good on your record and can have serious consequences.
2. Alert the authorities
Yes, even if it was only a minor accident and there were no serious injuries, you should still call the police. In order to file an insurance claim you may require a police report, so it’s important for both parties to speak with the police, file reports, and let the police assess the damage.
Of course, if it is not an emergency, please don’t dial 911 – use the local police service number.
3. Can I get your number?
Phone number, insurance policy number, registration number, and license plate number to be exact.
Not only is it important that you and the other drivers involved in the accident swap information so you can contact each other in the future, but insurance, vehicle, and registration information is required when filing a police report and when filing an insurance claim.
4. I will try to fix you.
Once all of the on-site musings are dealt with and any medical attention needed has been provided – you can give your car the medical attention it needs. Of course, we mean it’s time to contact an auto body repair shop.
Shop around, get some quotes, and get your baby back on the road as soon as possible.
If you are involved in a traffic accident, whether because of the recklessness or carelessness of another driver, because of adverse weather conditions, or because of something you did, these are the best steps to take in order to handle the situation properly.
Of course, our best advice is always to take a proactive approach to driving, drive to conditions, and stay alert – the best way to deal with an accident is to avoid the accident in the first place!