Last year there were over 14,000 car crashes in the state of Vermont. Getting into a serious car accident can be a scary and stressful situation, and with emotions running high, it’s easy to forget what steps to take to protect yourself from further damages. Here's our quick checklist to follow if you unfortunately find yourself dealing with a traffic collision.
Move to a safe area -
You and your passengers’ safety is of the utmost priority when a car accident occurs. If possible, move your car to the side of the road where it won’t obstruct passing traffic. Be sure to stand away from your car - in fact, many motor vehicle crash injuries occur when a passing car strikes a parked car.
Check for injuries -
Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of injury in the United States. From seat belt burns and concussions, to serious comas and death, car accidents are incredibly dangerous. Check yourself, the other driver, and any passengers for injuries. If any injuries or medical emergencies are involved, you should immediately call 911.
Call the police -
It is important to have an official police report when filing a claim with your insurance company. Many people forget to involve the police after an accident, exposing themselves to risk if an auto accident claim or personal injury case goes to court. If you end up pursuing an insurance claim or defending yourself from false accusations, it’s always helpful to have a police document in hand.
Swap information -
Usually the responding police officers will handle this part, but if they are not there, you should take down the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of all drivers and passengers involved. You should also copy their proof of insurance and obtain contact information from any relevant witnesses nearby.
Take pictures -
Photo evidence is crucial - not just for auto body damage but also personal injury claims - and it lends credibility to any testimonies during a case. Document all evidence of visible damage to property and people alike.
File your claim -
Contact your insurance company to begin the claims process. Keep track of all the information related to your claim, including medical bills, rental car receipts, and any other expenses you might have due to the car accident.
Know your rights -
Reach out to an attorney at Brady Donahue for a free initial consultation, whether you are at-fault or a victim of the accident. Common issues that can arise from a car accident include fraudulent claims made against you, insurance companies neglecting payments for medical attention, and even employer liability for accidents at work. Before you ever to speak to the other party’s insurance company, you should seek legal advice - your entire case may hinge upon it.
The attorneys at Brady Donahue have vast experience in navigating the tricky landscape of the personal injury field and auto insurance industry following a car accident. If you’ve been injured, contact Brady Donahue today for a free and confidential consultation about your case.