How to Handle an Accident When You’re the Driver

How to Handle an Accident When You're the Driver

Anyone involved in an accident on the road will be faced with lots of dilemmas and decisions to make in the immediate aftermath.

The problem is, for most people in this situation it will be their first time dealing with it, and the prospect of doing the right thing while protecting yourself as well can be daunting.

Drivers are in an especially precarious position in this context, so let’s look at a few steps you should take to avoid an auto incident turning from a manageable catastrophe into a chaotic farce.

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Don’t go anywhere

The fight-or-flight instinct that resides in all of us might make you want to leave the scene of an accident as soon as possible. However, this could be seriously problematic, as well as potentially illegal, depending on the circumstances.

It doesn’t matter if the incident was the fault of a third party; resist the temptation to flee and stick around until the authorities arrive.

Move your vehicle to safety & call in the cavalry

If your car is still operational, shift it out of the flow of traffic if possible. This is both to protect the vehicle and to make the road safe for other users in the interim.

Next, get in touch with the relevant emergency services, depending on the context. Call an ambulance if injuries have occurred, or get in contact with the police if everyone is intact.

Get legal representation

Whether you think you caused the accident, or you’ve been the victim of a hit and run, expert attorneys can assist you.

Whether you hire hit and run accident lawyers based in Chicago or any other state you may be living in to help you sort out the legal side of things going forward, the sooner you do this the better.

Specialists in this field will be able to guide you through the potentially tricky process of either making a claim in the event that you are the plaintiff, or of defending yourself in court if you are at fault in any way.

Whatever the case, don’t take any chances or make any assumptions. As the saying goes, keep your mouth shut and lawyer up.

Record evidence

Another important step to take after an auto accident is to ensure that you document the scene, and the damage done to the vehicles involved, as thoroughly as possible.

If you’ve got a modern mobile phone, using it to record video footage and also to take pictures will give you excellent first hand evidence to support any claim or case you make.

Of course you can pre-empt the accident by fitting a dashboard camera to your vehicle. These are popular products which are quickly becoming a vital car gadget, saving footage of the run-up to a collision which can in turn be solid, indisputable evidence in the event that there is a disagreement over the facts.

Contact your insurer

The final must-do when dealing with an accident as a driver is to let your car insurance firm know what has happened. Like getting in touch with the police, this is part and parcel of what is expected of all parties involved in this type of incident, so it’s not a responsibility you can shirk without it coming back to bite you further down the line.

You may still be worried about the fallout of an auto accident even after reading all this, but just know that advice and support is available, you just need to be willing to go and ask for it.