Car crashes happen every day. In fact, according to the NYPD, there were more than 18,000 motor vehicle accidents in the city in July alone. While you may have never thought much about the aftermath of a car crash, what you do immediately following one may make a huge difference.
Every car accident is different. Still, if you want to maximize your chances of pursuing compensation from a negligent driver, you must take certain steps after a collision. Here are four essential ones.
- Call the police
While alerting law enforcement following a serious car crash is commonsensical, you may think that handling a minor one without professional assistance is an acceptable alternative. That may be a mistake, however. Police officers understand both how to secure accident scenes and conduct investigations. By alerting authorities when you have a collision, you help build a record of the incident.
- Talk to bystanders
Even though police officers write reports, you probably want to create your own record of the collision. As you may suspect, witnesses often provide important insights into the events leading up to, during and after the crash. Therefore, try to talk to as many bystanders as possible, assuming you can do so without endangering yourself or others. When you do, obtain contact details so you can follow up with anyone who observed the accident.
- Think about what you say
Insurance investigators, the other driver and other individuals may want to talk to you after the wreck. You must be careful about the statements you make. That is, you do not want to inadvertently admit fault. Therefore, consider speaking with an experienced lawyer before making any official or unofficial statements.
- Go to the doctor
Finally, you want to be sure you are both physically and mentally healthy. Put simply, any car accident may cause you to sustain a serious injury. Accordingly, whether you were in a severe or minor accident, you should always schedule a doctor’s appointment. If you need emergency care, go to the hospital immediately.
With the high number of automobile accidents that occur in New York every single day, you may eventually find yourself in the middle of one. By taking certain steps following an accident, you protect your legal rights. You also boost your chances of recovering completely.