Traffic in metro Atlanta can be complicated, making accidents a common event. Because accidents are so common, you should know ahead of time what steps to take before an accident happens to you, leaving you saying, “I just got into a car accident in Tucker, what should I do now?”
It can be hard to stay focused after an auto accident, so it’s a good idea to ensure that you have important documents, like your driver’s license, car insurance card, health insurance card, vehicle registration, list of emergency contacts and so on, in your purse, wallet, console or glove box along with a pen. It can also be helpful to have a checklist of steps to take after an accident in an easy-to-reach spot in your car.
You should also either make sure your phone is charged at all times or keep an emergency charger with you. If your car insurance provider has an app, have it installed. The following tips should keep you calm and help make sure that you do the right things after an accident.
After You’ve Been in a Car Accident:
- Don’t Block Traffic
Move all vehicles involved in the accident out of the flow of traffic, otherwise more accidents could occur. If anyone involved is seriously injured or any of the vehicles are too damaged to drive, leave it for an ambulance and tow truck to take care of.
- Give the Police a Call
A police report does not generally need to be filed in the case of a minor accident, but it’s wisest to call an officer even if you think the damage is under $500. If you don’t file a report and the damage ends up being greater than you thought, you may not be able to get compensation for it.
- Remain at the Scene
If an officer determines the accident minor enough to not require a report, you can simply exchange insurance and contact information. Otherwise, remain at the scene.
If you do leave the scene of the accident, you could be facing severe consequences, especially if anyone was injured. Instead, put on your hazard lights and wait until you receive permission to leave.
- File a Claim, by App or Phone Call
If your insurance provider has an app, you should be able to take pictures of any damage and send the information directly to your insurance company. If not, take detailed pictures and notes to thoroughly document the accident for when you call them to file the claim.
- Get Evaluated for Injuries
It’s important to get evaluated for any injuries within 24 hours of an auto accident, even if you don’t yet have any symptoms. During the panicked aftermath of an accident, you might not initially be aware of any injuries, but if you start to feel symptoms later, it may be too late to prove that the accident is the cause of your injury, leaving you without the medical compensation you deserve.