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A car wreck is best avoided, but most drivers will encounter one or more accidents over their lifetime. The experience of a car wreck can be disorienting and scary. Keep these important steps in mind while handling an unexpected car wreck.
Take a Breath & Stay Calm
The most important thing to do immediately after a car wreck is to try to stay calm. Panicking after an accident will impede your decision making and assessment skills, which are necessary for the following steps.
Check Injuries & Damage
After taking a calming breath, check your passengers and yourself for injuries. Determine whether or not you are able to safely pull your car out of the way of moving traffic. Once the injuries and damage to your car have been assessed with a cursory examination, you can attempt to contact help.
Call the Police
Whether you were involved in a major wreck or a minor fender-bender, you should call the police after pulling your car off of the road. An accident report needs to be filed so there is an official record of the wreck details. Not only does this protect your rights, it can help determine liability for insurance purposes.
Even if you were at fault in the wreck, you should gather the names, contact and insurance information for every other driver involved in the collision. In the chaos after a wreck it is easy to overlook this step. By taking the step to collect this information right at the scene of the accident, you can save yourself a lot of time and stress when insurance claims need to be filed and statements are made the police.
Contact Your Insurance Provider
The sooner you contact your insurance provider, the sooner any claims you plan on filing can be started. Also, the police officer who responds to the scene of the car wreck can provide clear and concise details to the insurance agent.
A car wreck is scary and often chaotic. As long as you stay as calm as possible, contact the proper authorities and collect all necessary information you should be equipped for handling this troubling situation.