One of the worst things that can happen to an auto enthusiast is getting in a car accident. Not only do we get shaken and feel like a fool, our “baby” may be damaged beyond repair. Don’t make matters worse by missing some of these helpful tips when getting into a car accident.
Never drive away from a car accident. Whether you’re at fault or the other guy, whether there’s damage or no damage, it’s against the law to not stop when you’re involved in an accident. Each state has its own Vehicle or Transportation Code. But in most states, leaving the accident scene is very foolish and can result in a misdemeanor or felony, depending on if someone is hurt or not. Providing reasonable assistance to anyone injured is also necessary, and is definitely good karma. I’m sure its something you would want if the “shoe was on the other foot.”
Of course, your emotions and nerves could be wavering after a mishap. Remain calm and stay in your car until you feel somewhat normal. Pull over to the side of the road, if you can. And by all means, don’t be a fool and make matters worse by causing a confrontation. Always ask the other driver and passengers if they are okay or if they need any medical assistance. Be sure to remove any valuables from your car before it is towed.
It’s required that you locate the other drivers and passengers who were involved and provide them with your name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, registration and insurance information. Also, get the makes and models of cars involved and any witnesses. Sometimes it’s hard to remember details afterward.
If no people are at the scene of the accident, the driver must leave their contact information where it can be found. You never know when there may be a hidden camera that catches you running away from an incident. So be honest about your mishaps, rather than leave yourself open to penalties such as fines, license suspension or worse.
Some of us have the tendency to say, “I’m sorry” or try to recreate the scene. Whatever you do, don’t guess at what happened and never, ever admit fault. Unfortunately, saying you’re sorry can be an admittance of guilt, so try to avoid these words. In addition, don’t mention how much coverage you have. This is foolish. Protect yourself by keeping your thoughts and yourself together.
Report the accident immediately. Get an accurate record of what occurred from police and take pictures. Most of us have a camera on our cell phones. If not, keep a disposable camera in the glove box. You will need an incident report for insurance purposes. Otherwise, what proof do you have?
Keep a Vehicle Safety Kit
Emotions will be high, so it doesn’t hurt to be prepared by having a pen, paper, flares and flashlight on hand. You can use this handy visor organizer from Kraco. In addition, a first aid kit can be very useful. In it, you can have items such as a mylar blanket, snacks (if you or others are diabetic) and bandages.
Recently, I found out for myself that having a car phone charger is helpful and can reduce stress when trying to contact all the necessary individuals. There’s nothing worse than having a low phone battery when you need to get help. It’s a great idea to have a list of emergency contacts in the glove box, as well.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if it’s a small accident, sometimes aches and pains don’t appear until a day or two later. Don’t be a fool. It doesn’t hurt to get checked out by a doctor in case something occurs at a later date. Be sure to keep all visits in a claim file for insurance purposes and future reference.
That’s it. Everyone from Kraco wishes you a Happy April Fool’s Day.