We don’t like to think about it, but thousands of car accidents happen in the U.S. every year.
Statistically, things like speeding, distracted driving, alcohol, and driving at night make it more likely you’ll be involved in an accident.
However, as too many of us know, sometimes car accidents are unavoidable.
Bosworth Insurance—a trusted local insurance agency in Tyler, Texas protecting multiple generations of clients—knows that the minutes and hours after a car accident can be disorienting and confusing. Especially if you or someone else suffered an injury.
Being prepared in case of a car accident and knowing what to do afterward can make all the difference.
As anyone who’s ever been in a car accident can attest, the time directly after is something of a blur. This can even be true of a simple fender bender. In those first moments after a crash, take time to ensure everyone involved is ok. After assessing your own wellbeing, if you have passengers, check on them first. If it’s safe to do so, make sure that the people in the other vehicle are also unharmed. If anyone is injured, call for medical attention right away.
Once everyone involved in the accident has been assessed for medical needs, it’s crucial that you make sure the vehicles involved don’t cause further accidents. If it’s possible, move the vehicles to the side of the road or other safe areas away from moving traffic.
Use whatever safety equipment you have available—hazard lights, cones, flares, etc.—to alert other traffic to the presence of your vehicles.
Depending on the severity of the accident, it’s important to contact the proper authorities for help. It’s standard to call 911 in the event of an accident.
However, the police may not come if the accident is a minor fender bender.
In this instance, it’s important for you to do your due diligence and obtain a copy of the police report. You can generally get this directly from the local police station. Whether the police respond in person or not, you can still request a copy.
A copy of the police report is important and necessary for your insurance claim.
If the police do arrive and make a report, make sure you take note of the police badge number and the names of any officers involved.
Camera phones are a great asset when it comes to documenting the scene of an accident for your insurance. Take photos and videos from as many angles as possible. This also protects you in case there are any discrepancies if and when you and the other driver file your insurance claims.
Before smartphones, it was traditional to write down the other person’s information, but in today’s world, it’s simple just to take photos of the other person’s:
Other important details to note are the:
Depending on the severity of the accident, it might be necessary to contact a tow company to get your vehicle repaired.
Do you have roadside assistance? Getting a policy with AAA or another company that offers roadside assistance is a proactive way to know you and your vehicle won’t be stranded in the case you can’t drive it away from the scene of an accident.
Whether you decide to file a claim or not, it’s important to let your insurance company know about the accident.
Talk to your insurance provider about what is covered in your vehicle insurance and whether you’re covered if you’re in an accident with someone who doesn’t have auto insurance. If your car insurance doesn’t have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, it’s a good idea to add it. Especially if you’re someone who drives or commutes on a regular basis.
Most likely, you’ll see an increase in your insurance premium, although it’s always a good idea to talk with your insurance provider about what options are available to you.
Especially if you spend multiple hours on the road every week, the likelihood of getting into a car accident increases.
However, being proactive and knowing what’s covered in your auto insurance policy—and don’t forget to ask about medical insurance in the case that you or someone else is injured—can help you be prepared and calm in a time of high stress.
No one likes to think of this sort of thing happening but knowing you can trust your local insurance company to have your back can make all the difference.