10 Important Car Accident Tips That You Should Know
Road accidents could happen to anyone, including YOU, when you least expect it to. Even if you are a safe driver, external factors such as bad road conditions, bad weather leading to reduced visibility, dangerous drivers etc. may lead to unwanted accidents that can cause personal injuries, emotional turmoil and apprehension about what to do next.
As it is almost inevitable for most of us to not drive on the road, it is important that you are aware of some useful post-accident tips to make sure you are protected.
1. Stop wherever you are
It is your legal obligation to stop even if you think that there was not any damage done. At most, move to a safe area (e.g. roadside) and check your surroundings before getting off from your car.
2. Stay calm
Take deep breaths to recompose yourself down before you do anything else. Do not attempt to do anything without a calm mind.
3. Determine the extent of damage and/ or injuries
Check to see if anyone needs urgent medical care. Seek immediate medical attention by calling an ambulance if required.
4. Document the car accident
Take photos of the car accident, including your car and any other vehicle(s) and/ or road obstacles that are involved. Make sure to only do so if the surrounding is safe to do so (e.g. Do not attempt to take photos in the middle of a highway!).
5. Exchange information with the other driver
Avoid playing the blame game. Communicate in a calm and proper manner to ensure smooth settlement between you and the other driver. Some basic information that you should note down includes:
– Car plate number
– Driver’s name
– Driver’s IC number
– Driver’s phone number
– Driver’s license number
6. Collect statements from witnesses of the accident
Optionally, if there were any witnesses to the car accident, be sure to jot down their statements to protect yourself. Be sure to also note down the below:
– Witness’s name
– Witness’s IC number
– Witness’s phone number
7. Lodge a police report
You MUST make a police report within 24 hours from the time of the car accident even if you do not intend to make any insurance claims. This does not only serve as a prerequisite for insurance claims, it will also protect you from being penalised by the police in the event that the other driver or any other 3rd party lodges a police report to go against you.
8. Contact your insurance agent
Call your insurance agent to notify them about the car accident. Be sure to get advice from your insurance agent before you proceed to do any repair work to your damaged car to avoid forfeiture of insurance claims. Be sure to prepare all supporting documents required by the insurance company to ensure a smooth insurance claim process.
9. Document all medical attention obtained
In the event that you are injured in the car accident, you should note down all aspects of medical treatment, including medical expenses, co-pays and out-of-pocket costs relating to subsequent follow-ups and/ or prescriptions of medication. This will serve as good evidence for both medical insurance claims as well as any claim for damages if any lawsuit is involved.
10. Limit conversation and never admit responsibility for the accident
Car insurance states that you must not assume liability or responsibility in case of a car accident. Let the insurance company do the talking if you want to make a claim from them. Limit conversation with any 3rd party as well. You should only disclose facts of the car accident to the police, medical professionals and your insurance agent.