Did you know that nearly 43,000 people died in car accidents in the U.S. in 2021? This was a more than 10% increase from 2020. Nearly five million received serious injuries in car accidents during the year.
With the risk you take every time you get behind the wheel, you should understand what to do if you get into a car accident. These are steps you should take.
First, you should take a few deep breaths and calm down. Then, check yourself and your passengers for injuries. If you feel injured, avoid movement. However, if you can, move your vehicle to the side of the road and out of traffic. Turn your hazard lights on and your engine off.
Contact law enforcement
In an emergency situation, dial 911. Otherwise, you can call the local law enforcement. You should even report minor fender benders. Speak with the police, but do not incriminate yourself. Request an accident report.
Document the scene
While you wait for the police to show up or complete their reports, do your own documenting. Take photos of the crash scene, your vehicle and the other vehicles involved. Speak with witnesses, and gather their contact information. Write down anything you can remember.
Seek medical attention
Whether you feel or see an injury or not, you should visit a doctor. If you know you received an injury, go to the hospital, but if not, visit a doctor as soon as you can. Injuries may not show up for several hours or days after an accident due to your adrenaline. You do not want to further injure yourself or have medical claims denied because you did not seek help right away.
The more information and help you receive, the better your outcomes, both financial and physical.