The moments following a car accident can be overwhelming and terrifying. It may be one of the most stressful and emotionally trying times of your life. You may be in shock, confused, or scared, or you may even be injured and in pain. As humans, it is natural to react to certain circumstances in an emotional manner, whether in sadness, or fear, or even anger. Unfortunately, responding with anger or violence can make a terrible situation even worse.
Although it may seem difficult, it is critical for you to refrain from acting in a way that will put you in further danger or a way that could come back to haunt you following a vehicle collision. Although it may seem impossible, it is important that you respond to an accident with common courtesy. Dealing with other drivers in a calm demeanor can make the difference in having your insurance claim honored and making sure all the boxes are checked. Although it can be difficult to handle this situation composedly, it is worth doing so. Following our short guide will ensure you respond appropriately in the aftermath of an accident.
Stop Immediately After Your Accident
Stopping your vehicle immediately after an accident is not only a legal requirement, but it is also proper etiquette for dealing with automobile accidents. It is important to pull your vehicle out of the middle of the road and off to the side. Not only does this ensure your safety once you exit the vehicle, this also enables other vehicles on the road to continue on their way without major disruption.
Other vehicles involved in the accident should pull over to the side of the road as well. Finding a more convenient location will help you communicate effectively with the other driver and allow you to converse without extreme noise and crowding from other vehicles.
Take A Moment To Gather Yourself Before Exiting The Vehicle
Automobile accidents can quickly disrupt your thoughts and emotions. Having an overly-emotional response to an accident can be dangerous and compromising. If you get out of the vehicle too soon, your response can be driven by a rush of adrenaline. This could cause you to scream, swear, call names, or act in a way that jeopardizes your legal stance. It is critical to take a few moments to collect yourself before exiting your vehicle. Take a few deep breaths to calm down so you can effectively address the situation in a rational manner.
Act Courteous Toward The Other Driver, Regardless Of How You Feel
The other driver may be terrible and irresponsible behind the wheel, which could have been the reason for your accident to begin with. Unfortunately, telling the other driver how horrible they are, swearing at them, or harassing them will not help you at all. Acting negatively could anger the other driver, frustrate any law enforcement officers responding to the scene, and can even cause insurance agents to take you less seriously or else ignore you altogether. Although you do not need to be their best friend, it is crucial to refrain from being rude. Responding calmly will help ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.
Do Not Admit Fault For The Accident
No matter what, do not admit fault for the accident. You do not need to apologize to the other driver. Taking the blame at all for the accident can truly jeopardize your chances of recovering compensation for your damages. Alternatively, you should not expect the other driver to apologize or take fault. Do not place blame on the other driver in conversation either. If the other driver does admit fault, acknowledge it, and do not disagree.
Admitting fault can have a serious impact on your ability to recover compensation through a legal claim. You do not want to say the accident was your fault to the police, other drivers, witnesses, or anyone else on the scene. Communicate with the other driver, law enforcement, and witnesses as much as necessary, but do not prolong communication if you do not have to. The longer you engage in conversation, the more likely you are to say something you may regret.
Gather As Much Evidence As Possible On Scene
It is crucial to gather as much information and evidence as you can on the scene. Take pictures of the scene of the accident. It is crucial to get photographs that show the damage to vehicles up close. Step back and capture photos of the entire scene. Take pictures of the license plate of the other vehicle involved and of any skid marks or objects in the road.
In addition to photos, you will want to gather insurance information, gather contact information from the other drivers and any witnesses, and get a copy of the police report. If there are any pieces of your vehicles that fall into the road, be sure to gather them and place them in your back seat or truck. Sometimes, these pieces can contain critical details attorneys and investigators can use to recreate the accident and determine fault.
Contact A Salt Lake City Car Accident Lawyer As Soon As Possible
Although we hope you never have to deal with an automobile accident, it is critical for you to be prepared in case you do. Contacting Siegfried & Jensen will ensure your legal rights are protected in case of an accident. We help victims gather evidence, collect witness statements, file their claims, and negotiate fair and full compensation for their injuries and damages.
Our attorneys work diligently on behalf of clients so they can focus on their recovery without the hassle of dealing with insurance companies and the legal system. Contact Siegfried & Jensen at (801) 598-1218 as soon as possible to schedule a free consultation so we can get started on your case. We are determined to help you obtain the best possible outcome and the justice you deserve for your case.