Vehicle accidents occur every day regardless of the severity of the damages. While some crashes are fatal and could lead to death or life-changing injuries, some involve less serious damages that are easily fixed.
Common Types of Vehicle Accidents
- Rear-end Collision- This is the most common type of vehicle accident. When a car follows another too closely, a crash may occur if the vehicle in front stops suddenly. This type of crash is called the rear-end collision, and they do not cause major damages.
- Single-vehicle Crash- This includes; running into an object, going off the road, losing control of the vehicle, and other related accidents. Only one car is involved in this case.
- Side-impact Collision- This happens when your car crashes into the side of another vehicle or vice versa.
- Head-on Collision- When vehicles hit each other with their front ends, this is a head-on collision. It usually happens when street signs are ignored, or lanes are crossed inappropriately.
- Multiple Vehicle Collision- When three or more vehicles collide, this is a multiple vehicle collision. The effect of this may range from minimal to fatal damages. It is usually caused by an already existing accident, roadblock commotions, jumping lanes inappropriately, and many others.
Nobody wishes to get into a vehicle accident except a psycho, of course, but you need to know what to do to remedy the situation when you get into an auto crash in Orlando. We have listed out 11 steps that you can follow after getting into a vehicle accident. These steps will help you with things firsthand and allow you to gather enough evidence that your attorney needs to help you deal with your insurance company.
Auto Insurance companies need concrete evidence from the accident before taking care of any bills related to it. So, the more evidence you can provide your Orlando car accident lawyer from the crash, the easier it will be to obtain fair compensation for the crash-related expenses without hassle.
Steps To Take After Getting Into An Auto Accident
Call 911 to report the case and to get emergency medical help on time. No matter how minor the injury or effect of the crash is, call 911 for help. Often, the impact of the collision takes a toll on the chest and back region because of the seatbelt hold. This is to say that you might not realize the effect immediately but may need medical help to figure that out.
Calling 911 would also help you get a police report on the car accident. The police report is one factor that will help you get the details of the other party and also claim fair compensation from your insurance company.
Another reason why you should call 911 is that the crash may cause a roadblock and may be hazardous to other road users. The police will help clear up the road and also direct the traffic to prevent further accidents.
In case of minor collisions that involve no injuries, you might just want to exchange contact with the other party and go to the police station to file a report on your own. In whichever case ( if you called 911 or not), you can contact a car accident lawyer to help you assess the situation and file an insurance claim or injury lawsuit for medical expenses or property damages.
Assess the damages and check if everyone is uninjured. To Avoid delay in getting medical attention, check for injuries to ascertain that you and the other parties involved in the crash are fine. If there’s anyone with a serious injury, do not move the person from the spot. Wait till you get medical help from experienced medical personnel to avoid further complications. Then check your car to access the damages and take pictures of the crash if it’s a single-vehicle crash. If there is another vehicle involved, take pictures of the other vehicle too. Also, take pictures related to the crash to gather evidence and protect yourself against false statements by the other parties involved.
Don’t try to be modest about your injuries, state exactly how you feel. On or off the accident scene, request medical attention when you think something abnormal after the crash. Some injuries are internal and may not immediately be discovered on the scene. The minute you feel pain, call for medical assistance to avoid further complications and personal expenses.
Do not move the vehicle unnecessarily. To avoid complications, never leave the accident scene or drive your vehicle if it is not necessary. You may have to move the car in some cases, such as:
- If the position of the car will cause more accidents or is endangering life or lives
- If the car is in any way obstructing traffic.
- If the police decide, you can move the vehicle.
Do not flee the scene because once you are caught, it will take a long time and resources to make the legal authorities understand that you left out of panic. Be calm and wait for the police to get there before moving the car.
Obtain contacts of witnesses around and in cases where there is none. Obtain a police accident report unfailingly. It helps to have witnesses make statements about the accident. Statements from third parties often go a long way to clear the air in a situation where you and the other driver report different versions of the accident. So, acquire eyewitnesses’ contact as they are neutral parties who will most likely report an unbiased version of the crash.
And in cases where there is no witness around, you need to immediately request an investigation by the police. The reports are drafted based on the fact and immediate memory of the parties involved. The reports will serve as evidence for you to obtain full compensation and dismiss any claim to implicate you when you are not at fault.
Inform your insurance company about the accident. After assessing the situation and calling for help, call your insurance company next so that they can start filing a claim for you immediately. Whether or not you are the one at fault, be the first to call your insurance company before the other driver does. This will help protect you if the other party wants to take legal actions against you or in case of future injuries resulting from the accident. Some insurance company policies require that you inform them immediately, or you may lose your claim due to a delay in the report. To protect yourself, ensure you call your insurance company after taking the first basic steps.
Don’t ever present a recorded statement to your insurance company as evidence. Avoid submitting a recorded statement to insurance companies. Many accident victims have lost their claim due to contradicting reports. After an accident, your mind is not completely settled. You may make implicating statements, such as taking all the blame for the incident, admission of guilt, and denial of injuries. This piece of evidence is really hard to dispute, and this may lead to partial or complete loss of your claim. You should know that Insurance adjusters don’t usually have your best interest at heart because they aim to save their company some money.
Avoid recording a statement and request for your lawyer before accepting any interviews.
Call a car accident lawyer. Your car accident attorney ensures that you get full compensation for damages and injuries relating to the crash. Insurance companies sometimes settle to compensate the recipient partially. However, calling a car accident lawyer helps you know your rights and makes sure you don’t settle for less than you should.
Apart from helping to claim compensations for damages, your car accident attorney allows you to build a case if the other parties decide to take legal actions against you. You need a lawyer even if your insurance company has agreed to compensate you for avoiding future implications related to the incident.
Do not settle for immediate compensation if the situation has not been completely assessed. If you get an offer from the other driver’s insurance company regarding a quick compensation for the damages caused by their client, reject it. Before accepting any settlement, ensure that the police and your attorney have fully assessed the situation. The amount offered immediately may be inadequate to cover the damages regardless of how tempting the sum may be.
Do not sign a release before your attorney’s final assessment. Wait until it is determined that the compensation is fair and will cover the expenses incurred.
Do not discuss the details of the accident with anyone other than concerned persons.
Be careful how you discuss the incident with people to avoid implicating statements that you might make unknowingly. You may admit fault or make a guilt admission which may be used against you by the other parties involved in the incident.
The only people you should talk to are your attorney, insurance company agents, and the police. If possible, limit what you say to the other driver, lawyer, insurance company, and witnesses to avoid unnecessary claims or forfeiture of compensations.
Keep all the receipts of the expenses incurred due to the incident. It is important to keep records of receipts from the medical providers and mechanics you used to take care of the damages. You might need them to claim compensation from the insurance company. The records you should keep include; medical expenses, towing costs, taxi services, replacing personal items lost due to the incident, the fraction of your salary lost due to your inability to go to work, and other expenses incurred due to the incident.
If you have a problem carrying files around, you can scan the documents and keep them on your devices. Just make sure you keep the receipts and copies of the bill (if you haven’t paid yet) because your words alone will not be sufficient evidence when filing for insurance claims.
You may not be able to recall all the steps listed above when you eventually get in an accident. In such a case, just do two things immediately:
- Call 911- if there are injuries that need emergency medical attention, they are taken care of ASAP.
- Call your attorney- You may be disoriented as a result of the accident. To avoid costly mistakes, call your car accident attorney for immediate intervention.
Below are questions that car accident parties usually ask:
What should I do after an accident?
Answer: Check for personal injuries and the other party’s injuries if there’s one, then call 911 to report the case. Take pictures from the scene as evidence and obtain the contact of witnesses. Then inform your car accident attorney afterward and your insurance company too.
Should I call the police after the incident happens?
Answer: Even if the crash is not fatal, inform the police to obtain an accident report from them if you need to make insurance claims. The reports also add credibility to your statements.
How do I repair my car after someone crashes into me?
Answer: The insurance company of the opposing party is responsible for the bills. And if the party has no insurance coverage, he pays for the bills.
What do I do if I leave the accident scene before reporting the case?
If the accident is a single-vehicle accident without much damages, Call your attorney and go to the police to file an accident report for insurance claims. However, if it is not a single-vehicle accident or any other type of accident involving injuries and major damages, Call your lawyer and turn yourself in before getting caught and charged with a felony.
In conclusion, no one wishes to have a car crash, but several million worldwide are involved in crashes yearly. It’s normal to feel tense, anxious, and upset when you get into an accident, but knowing what steps to take (as explained above) can help you stay calm and make it a lot easier to handle your insurance claims. It is indeed a hassle to take care of accidents and the stress that follows, financially and psychologically. Do all it takes to avoid them. Obey the traffic regulations, don’t drink and drive, service your car regularly, and drive safely. It is better to be safe than sorry.