After a vehicle collision, you may be upset and distracted; you can easily forget even the most basic rules of safety. One of the most common questions that we hear is “what am I supposed to do after a car accident?”
Hopefully, you will never be involved in such an accident. But, if so, be sure that you do the following six things to help:
- Stay at the accident location. Even if the collision appears to be a minor fender bender, you should stay on the scene until law enforcement arrives. If the crash is of a serious nature, investigating officers will need to measure the scene and record other data.
- Call 911. You should always report any accident that causes damage to the vehicles involved. Not only does this create documentation for your insurer, but it also notifies law enforcement officers in the area, who can offer assistance to you and other victims and manage traffic issues at the scene.
- Remain as calm as you can. After a car wreck, it is easy to become upset and anxious. After all, your body is dumping adrenaline into your blood. Your heart will beat faster; you may even find yourself worrying or becoming angry. Remember, all of the people involved in the crash are also upset and possibly injured. Everyone’s first concern should be to check on the well-being of all the other accident victims. With everyone then safe, stay calm and focused. It will help you remember the details of the accident.
- Protect your personal information. The only individuals that should have a need for your contact information are the other driver(s) and law enforcement. In most instances, everything will be contained in the accident report that the officer completes. If a stranger asks you for your personal information at the scene, kindly refuse and tell them that they should see the officer for that information.
- Never move debris or vehicles until instructed to by law enforcement. It can be tempting to remove debris in an effort to help traffic, but that can be dangerous in and of itself. It can also create more problems for the investigating officer. It is the responsibility of police officers to survey the scene and the debris to determine how the accident occurred.
- Be evaluated on the scene for the need for medical treatment. Every victim of a vehicle accident should be evaluated by a medical professional as soon as possible. Never refuse medical attention at the scene of the crash. Even things that appear to be minor at the time could become serious or are being masked by shock and adrenaline. Be sure that you are evaluated on the scene by paramedics before leaving. And, if they recommend sending you to the hospital for further tests, go. X-rays and other imaging tests often reveal hidden injuries from a crash that are not otherwise notable. It’s always better safe than sorry.
After a crash in North Carolina, the things you don’t do can be just as important as the things you do. Understanding this can be a great help if you need to seek legal action.
Call us at (910) 501-2474 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced Wilmington car accident lawyers. The legal system can be intimidating, but we can provide you with peace of mind as you begin to recover from this traumatic event.