Year after year, people are involved in car accidents by the thousands. If you are one of the unlucky people, it is important that you know what to do after the accident. Your immediate reactions can greatly affect your future. With the right actions, costs can be reduced, injuries can be further prevented, also the clean up and repair process can be accelerated. Follow these steps so that you will have a ready action plan if you are involved in an accident.
First, keep an emergency kit in your glove compartment. Include in this kit, a pen and paper for note taking, carry a cell phone when you drive, and a medical card indicating conditions and allergies that medical personnel who may treat you should be aware of. A disposable camera is a great idea, even if your cell phone takes pictures. It will prove worthwhile if this occurs on the one day you forget your cell phone. You should take pictures of the vehicles at the scene. In your kit, include a list of law enforcement phone numbers.
Think of safety first. If no major injuries have occurred, move the cars over to the side of the road so that they are out of the way of oncoming traffic. In the case that a car is not able to be moved, passengers and drivers should stay in the car with their seatbelts on until help has arrived. Activate the hazard lights on the car and utilize flares and cones, if you have them.
Be sure to exchange information with the other party or parties in the accident. Exchange the following: names, phone numbers, addresses, insurance and policy numbers, license plate numbers and driver's license numbers, also the owner's name of each vehicle. If the owner is not the person who was driving the car during the accident, find out what the relationship between the two is. Photograph the accident as documentation. Then file an accident report. Do so even if a law enforcement officer does not respond to the accident. This can be done at a police station, or many times it is available at the Department of Motor Vehicles website.
Know what your Insurance policy covers. You may also have some coverage through your auto warranty. For example, you do not want to find out after the fact that the two truck or rental car were not covered by your insurance, warranty, or assistance plan. These coverage areas usually only add a dollar or two to your payment each month and may be worthwhile.
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