Which of These Describes You?
- If I’m ever in a car accident, I know exactly what I should and shouldn’t do following the impact, and I’m confident I’ll do the right things.
- If I’m ever in a car accident, I know what I should and shouldn’t do, but I worry that emotion might take over and lead me to make poor decisions in the moment.
- If I’m ever in a car accident, I’m not sure what I should and shouldn’t do.
If you selected the first response, congratulations! You’re in the minority! If you selected the second or third responses, you have much in common with other drivers, and your team at First National Insurance is here to help. Keep reading.
First, What Not to Do
Never leave the scene of an accident, even if you and the other driver decide that the accident doesn’t warrant filing a police report. Leaving the scene without sharing important information or reporting the accident can put you at risk of liability later.
Never admit fault in the accident. Only a thorough investigation can determine fault in a car accident, but adrenaline-fueled emotions often leave drivers feeling guilty whether they were at fault or not. Don’t put yourself in a position of liability until you know for sure who was at fault.
Avoid visiting with other parties involved in the accident. The conversation should be limited to what’s necessary – exchanging contact information, for example.
Eight Easy Steps to Take
And now, what you should do if you’ve been involved in an accident:
- Stay calm. Take a deep breath and take a moment to calm down before you exit your vehicle.
- Make sure everyone is safe and then call 911 to report the accident.
- Stay on the phone with dispatch until they hang up, answering their questions accurately and briefly and following the directions they give you.
- Call your insurance agent for direction; he or she can help you remain as calm as possible, collect the most important information, and avoid common mistakes after your accident. Follow the instructions your agent gives you.
- Get the other driver’s name, phone number, and insurance card. You can use your phone to take a picture of the front and back of their insurance card if it’s easier.
- Provide your name, phone number, and insurance card to the other driver if requested.
- Assist the officer who responds to the scene with their report; answer any questions (again, briefly and sharing only the information requested of you) and provide any documents they request. Most common documents requested are insurance cards, licenses, and vehicle registration.
- Take notes and photos if you can to detail what happened before, during, and after the accident. Photos of the way each vehicle came to rest after the accident and photos of any damage that occurred can be helpful.
Once you’ve been released from the scene by the officer on duty, work with your agent to begin the process of filing a claim and getting your vehicle repaired.
Are you happy with your current insurer? First National Insurance may be able to help with better customer service, lower rates, or better coverage. Find out today!