Following a car accident of any severity, you are going to be shaken up and a bit confused. However, it is important to try to regain your footing and concentration, so you can take a few steps that should always be done after any traffic collision.
A few things to always do after a crash are:
- Check on everyone: You should immediately see if anyone is seriously injured, including drivers, passengers, and any pedestrians that might have been near the collision. If someone is seriously injured, dial 911 to get emergency medical technicians on the scene as soon as possible.
- Call the police: If no one appears to be seriously injured, then you should probably still call the police and request a cruiser come to the scene. The police can help direct traffic away from the crash, possibly preventing a subsequent collision caused by rubberneckers. You can get the police officer’s badge information, so you can request a copy of their accident report later.
- Record statements: Using your smartphone, you should make a video recording of any statement you want to make about the crash while it is still fresh in your mind. You can ask others there to also give recorded statements if they want.
- Photograph the crash and licenses: Also using your smartphone, take pictures of the vehicles and injuries, as well as road, weather, and traffic conditions. We also advise you take a picture of the other driver’s insurance and license information to ensure you do not accidentally write down an incorrect digit.
- Inform both insurance companies: At some point soon, you need to call your own insurance company to tell them that another driver crashed into you, causing an accident that was not your fault. A day or so later, and perhaps with the help of your car accident attorney, you should call the other driver’s insurance company to inform them what happened. There is a chance that the other driver has either not told their insurer or blamed the crash on you because they know they are liable and “in trouble.”
- Get a medical evaluation: People who are seriously injured in a car accident should be taken to urgent care via ambulance for emergency medical attention. Others should still go see the doctor the same day for a checkup. A healthcare professional’s evaluation can uncover signs of underlying injuries that need further care. A doctor’s report will also clearly establish when your injuries occurred and what likely caused them, in case the other party’s insurance company tries to argue that you falsified or exaggerated your injuries.
Real-World Example of After-Accident Planning
One of our attorneys of Maloney Law Group, P.L.L.C. – for privacy’s sake, we will call our attorney Sam in this example – was in an auto accident not too long ago. Although it thankfully did not cause any serious injuries, the situation still served as a great example as to what to do after a crash and why.
In this accident, the liable driver – we will call them John – backed up into Sam while they were both in a private parking lot. Probably 90% of rear-end accidents like this one put the fault on the person in the back car, which would have been our attorney. Except Sam was driving the speed limit in the parking lot and paying attention to moving vehicles when John backed up suddenly into him, so he should not be the one to blame.
Sam spoke to John, made a video recorded statement, took photos of the cars immediately after the crash, photographed John’s license and insurance information, and called John’s insurance company a bit later. To not much surprise, John had claimed that Sam was the one who caused the accident. However, after the video statement and photographs that Sam took were reviewed, the insurance company conceded and paid all of his car’s damages. If it was not for those steps he took right after the crash, Sam probably would have been stuck with all of the bills!
Need reliable help that understands what you’re going through after a car accident in San Antonio? Dial (210) 361-2997 and connect with Maloney Law Group, P.L.L.C. today. Our boutique personal injury law firm is standing by to help you through this difficult time, starting with a consultation.