Detailed instructions for protection in the event of a car accident.
Car accidents are a leading cause of injuries and debilitating deaths across the country.
The facts about car accidents are alarming:
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 43,443 Americans were killed in automobile accidents in 2005.
This year alone, 2,494,000 people were injured in car accidents.
Of the traffic fatalities, three out of four were car occupants.
Around 4,550 of the fatalities were motorcyclists.
Another 5,665 of the people killed in traffic accidents were cyclists or pedestrians.
Almost 17,000 fatal road accidents were related to alcohol consumption.
A car collision can be a highly traumatic event. However, it is critical not to panic following a car collision. Instead, keep your mind clear.
First of all, keep calm
First, focus on taking steps to protect yourself and help other road traffic accident victims. Do not discuss the car accident with anyone except the police. Do not blame anyone, including yourself. Never argue with the other driver, even if you are sure that this person caused the accident.
Second, ask for help
Do not leave the scene of the accident. Call 9-1-1 from the car crash site to report the collision to the police. If someone has been injured, ask the 9-1-1 operator to immediately send emergency medical personnel to the scene of the accident.
If present set the torches to warn other drivers to slow down and avoid the people and vehicles involved in the car accident.
Retrieve driver data
Write down your name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, and state, license plate, registration, and auto insurance information, including your insurance policy number.
Facts about the property
If the driver of the other vehicle was not the owner, enter the name, address, insurance company, and car insurance number of the owner of that vehicle.
Check with the police about any injured parts, including car passengers. If possible, write down names, addresses, dates of birth, gender, and extent of the injuries.
Look for people who saw the car accident, including bystanders and occupants of other vehicles. Write down the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all of these witnesses.
Make a note of the make, body type, year of manufacture, and license plate number of all vehicles involved in the car accident. Also, consider the damage to each of the vehicles.
Scene of the accident in the car
Draw a diagram of the car accident site. Mark street names and the position of traffic lights, traffic signs, or other landmarks. Note the trajectory of each motor vehicle just before the collision point.
Protect your health
See a doctor after a car accident. Sometimes car accident victims are too stunned to know if they have been injured or not in the immediate aftermath of a major collision. It is therefore recommended that you see your family doctor as soon as possible. Let your doctor know about an auto collision so they can look for internal injuries that could result from a traumatic accident.
Report a car accident
If the police did not arrive at the scene of the accident, call the police to file a report as soon as you can make a call. If the driver of the other vehicle has left the scene of the accident, you still have to report the accident to the police. If the police report is available, get a copy of it.
Submit a car insurance application
Notify your motor car accident insurance company immediately and have a claim number issued. Ask your auto insurance agent to open a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) file to protect all of your rights under your policy.
Be sure to inform your insurance company if you have had a car accident. Some insurance policies require that an accident with an unidentified driver be reported within 30 days of the car accident.
Let your car insurance company know that you are claiming your right to coverage for uninsured or underinsured drivers if the car or truck that hit you is not covered by car insurance. Insurance companies often require immediate notification of these claims and can deny these benefits to anyone who does not meet the strict requirements of their policies.
Attorney Marya Sieminski joined Sam Bernstein’s law firm in 2003. She is admitted to the Michigan State Courts and United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and graduated with honors from Wayne State University School of Law. Marya worked as a trial attorney for 10 years, exclusively representing victims in physical injury disputes and worker compensation claims. She was also appointed by the governor to serve on the Michigan State Workers’ Compensation Qualifications Advisory Committee.