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Steps to take if you are in a car accident

The police reported more than 5.2 million car accidents in 2020, and unfortunately, the number of accidents and deaths is rising each year. These statistics make it unnerving or scary when an incident occurs.

You cannot let your nerves compromise you or your position when you become involved in an accident. Therefore, these are steps you should take.

Move over

After you have checked yourself and your passengers for injuries, take a minute to compose yourself. Then, if your vehicle still runs, move over to the side of the road and out of traffic. However, do not leave the scene.

Contact the police

If anyone receives an injury, dial 911 and ask for both the police and an ambulance. Otherwise, contact your local police department. Minor incidents may not warrant police intervention at the scene. However, you likely have to fill out paperwork at the police station later. If dispatch does deploy officers, wait for them to arrive on the scene. You will likely give a statement before they release you to leave the scene.

Get medical help

Whether you feel as if you received injuries or not, you should get checked out by your doctor, the EMTs on the scene or a medical professional at the hospital. There are times when injuries do not show up for hours or days because adrenaline masks them.

Gather evidence

You should also gather evidence from the scene. Take photos of the accident, license plates, bystanders and anything else you think may be important. Gather the contact information from witnesses. Collect the other driver’s license plate, license number and insurance information. Obtain the police report and gather your medical records.

For the best results, avoid talking to people at the scene unless absolutely necessary to prevent admitting or suggesting fault.

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