Car accidents are unfortunately part of every day life in our society. You may not think it could happen to you, but they occur on a pretty regular basis across the United States. In fact, there were 127,056 car accidents in Arizona across the 2018 calendar year. Fortunately, only 916 resulted in death, but 36,507 did result in some type of injury.
As a result, it is important to understand how to properly handle a car accident. It can be a shocking experience, so understanding proper protocol before an incident occurs is very important.
The first thing you need to do following an accident is check the health of everyone involved. Once you have arrived in a safe place on the side of the road, check both yourself and any passengers you may have for injury. After making sure that everyone from your vehicle is safe, make sure to quickly check on any other people involved as well.
Naturally, if someone has sustained a serious injury, promptly call the proper authorities to get the person the care they need. Health should always be the priority following a car accident.
Call the police
Once you have made sure that everyone is safe or receiving treatment, you want to get the police involved. Even if the accident is relatively minor, it is still in your best interest to give the police a call. The police officer will make a report of the situation, which could prove to be very helpful to you when you file your insurance claim.
Your next step is to gather as much information as you possibly can. Make sure to take down the name, insurance provider, license plate and any other relevant information about everyone involved in the accident. The police should also document this information, but it does not hurt to have your own record of the incident as well.
Additionally, you should document everything you can about the accident itself. Take notes about the damage to your vehicle and, if possible, capture pictures as well. If there are witnesses to the crash, you may also want to speak with them. All of this information could prove important later when you report the incident to your insurance provider.
Report the incident
The final step is to report the car accident to your insurance provider. This is why it is so important to document the incident. You want to have all of your information about the accident readily available, so you can offer exactly what your provider needs. A smart rule of thumb is to report any accident to your insurance company because what may appear to be a minor incident could quickly turn into thousands of dollars in damages or medical bills.