Your heart is racing, and so are your thoughts. You’ve just been in an accident. Everything happened so quickly you didn’t have time to react. Accidents are common, and they can happen to anyone. Sometimes it’s your fault, and other times it’s someone else’s. Accidents can be especially scary if there is an injury or death involved. According to the Association for Safe International Road Travel “2.35 million people are injured or disabled in a car accident each year.”

Not everyone is aware of what to do when there is an accident, and that’s okay. If you are involved in a truck, motorcycle, or car accident in California there are steps you should take in order to protect yourself. In order to act responsibly and accordingly after an accident, here are four things you should do.

Assess the Situation

After you’ve been in a car accident make sure to check that you are no longer in danger. If you or your vehicle are in immediate danger move to a safe area. Be sure you do not leave the scene of the accident. According to the California DMV “Leaving an car accident scene can result in having your driving privileges revoked, your license suspended, or criminal charges for “hit and run” being filed.” Be sure to get the license plate, make and model of the car, if you’re in an accident and the car involved tries to leave. Do Not Chase Down A Car That Flees The Scene.  

Call for Help if Necessary

After you’ve been in an accident it can be hard to think clearly but it is very important to assess what is going on. The first thing you should do is determine if someone is injured or not. If you or anyone else is seriously injured you should call emergency services such as the highway patrol, police, ambulance, or fire department.

Document and Exchange Information

It’s always important to document an accident. If you have a phone with a camera, take photos of the accident. Be sure to get photos of any damages done to your car, as well as any additional information that might be useful when you file a claim. Be sure to exchange information with all the drivers involved in the accident. You’ll want the driver and passenger names, License plate numbers, Insurance info, Makes and models of all vehicles involved, Location of the accident, and the name and badge number of any responding police officers.

Report the Accident to All Parties Necessary

After you’ve documented everything and gathered all the information necessary you’ll want to report the accident to all the necessary parties, that could be the police, your insurance (file a claim), the DMV, a trial lawyer if necessary, or your job if it is a company vehicle. Reporting your accident is very important and should be done to all necessary parties the day of the accident or within the next two days. Be sure to retain any medical or car expenses that were caused by the accident.

Getting in an automobile accident can be bad, but not knowing what to do during and after can make a huge impact on you financially. By utilizing the tips above, you can protect yourself legally and the professionals at Beckerman Anderson can help you attain the financial compensation you deserve.