According to the CDC, car accidents kill approximately 35 million Americans annually and send 2.3 million to the hospital. Survivors of car crashes might wonder what to expect after an accident. While each crash is different, there are some common patterns that each one follows. Find out what to expect after your accident so you don’t face any surprises and can get in the best position possible for a full recovery.
Look for Injuries
Car crashes involve huge forces exerted against the human body. Even a minor accident at low speeds can cause physical harm. A car accident can cause a broad range of injuries, including the following:
- Soft tissue damage
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Broken bones
- Spinal damage
- Traumatic brain injuries
Be sure to check yourself and anyone involved in the accident for injuries. Even minor injuries will warrant a trip to the doctor so you can be medically cleared. This may be important if you are involved in a lawsuit later on.
Call for Help
Call 911 if you discover that anyone in the accident was injured. You may also wish to contact the police if you want a 3rd party to witness the accident or to mediate between those involved. Your state may require you to call the police if you’ve been in an accident.
Move To Safety
If you’re able to, move to safety away from the crash site without leaving the general area. If you stay at the crash site, you may be at risk of being caught in another accident. Turn on your emergency lights if possible to warn other drivers, unless your car is too dangerous to approach due to fire or a potential explosion.
Exchange Contact Information
Exchange contact information with the other drivers that were involved in the accident. Each state has different laws on the information you need to give, but you should at least exchange your names and insurance information. Avoid discussing who is at fault, or this could make things more difficult later on.
Document the Damages
Take pictures of the scene of the accident as soon as it is safe to do so. Your insurance company may have an app that offers tips for taking photos of an accident. If you don’t have a camera available, simply draw the scene of the accident to give investigators something to work with later on.
Talk With Your Insurance Companies
Contact your car and health insurance companies to see if your accident is covered and what expenses they will pay toward the other driver if you are found to be at-fault.
File a Claim (Or Not)
Decide if you wish to file a claim with your insurance company or if you want to handle your expenses out-of-pocket. You may face significantly higher insurance rates regardless of whether or not the accident was your fault.
Get a Check-Up
Many people who are in a car accident think they feel fine at first, but this is often due to a state of shock. They later on discover injuries they didn’t know they had, some of which can be very serious. This makes it important to seek medical care after an accident.
A car accident can come out of nowhere, but knowing how to handle it can make it easier to handle. This is especially important if you’ve been injured, as the evidence you collect in the immediate aftermath can influence your ability to obtain the best settlement possible. If you accept a settlement from the insurer that is too low, you may be left with bills that you shouldn’t have to pay. Please click this link if you have been in a car accident and you want to find out how to get the maximum settlement.