Steps To Take After A Car Accident

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Knowing the steps to take after a car accident can greatly reduce the stress that comes with such an awful situation. Las Vegas is a growing city, which means more and more vehicles on the road, increasing the probability of accidents. All responsible motorists should know what to do in case of such an unfortunate incident, for their own safety and those around them.

Access The Situation

According to the NRS (Nevada Revised Statutes), anyone involved in a car accident should immediately stop at the scene if, death, injury, property or vehicle damage is involved.  Make sure that you, passengers, or any of the other involved motor vehicles are in need of immediate medical assistance. Then call the proper authorities. Be aware that some injuries that may seem mild, or not immediately apparent can still be serious. Often times, adrenaline from a scary or stressful situation can mask real injuries, like concussions or back issues. If there is any question or doubt, make sure you call for help.

Get To Safety

After the car accident, determine if it is possible to move involved vehicles and people to the closest safe place. This will help prevent any additional injuries and accidents. Your safety should be the number one priority.

When To Call For Police

After the traffic accident, determine whether to call the police. Local Las Vegas police may not respond to accidents involving only minor dings, or if it occurred on private property, such as a parking lot . If damage to property roughly falls under $750, and there is no immediate or severe personal injury, than taking up law enforcement time may not be necessary. Again, if there is any doubt, than proper authorities should be called.

If Police Are Called

If the level of car accident requires police assistance, make sure all parties remain until they arrive. The police are there to ensure safety of everyone involved, and to access the situation as objectively as possible. It is important that you cooperate with the police by having your license and registration ready and available upon there arrival. It is important to answer any questions openly and honestly, their report could be critical should any questions come up in the future.

If Police Are Not Called

Whether or not the local police have been involved, it is important that accurate details are noted, and information is exchanged. Make sure that you do not let any involved parties leave the scene until you know the following:

  • The full driver’s license information of everyone involved, such as names, addresses, driver’s license numbers, and even expiration dates.
  • Insurance information of the other drivers involved. Make sure you note details like if the insurance holder matches the driver information.
  • Details of all vehicles involved, from make and model, year and license plate number.
  • Write down accurate details like the weather, road conditions, cross streets and exact time of the accident.

Most of us have smartphones with cameras built in. Try and take pictures of the accident if its possible. It is important that you walk away from an accident knowing these details, it may be decisive in proving any future claims.

Contact Your Car Insurance Provider

It is important to immediately contact your insurance provider (and lawyer if necessary) and provide them with the details of the accident as soon as possible. Even though you have taken accurate notes of the car accident, it is best to contact such services as soon as possible as they may need you to provide additional clarification while things are still fresh. If police were involved, make sure you include the report number and officer’s name.

Sometimes when we are dealing with an awful situation like car accidents, we think we are at the mercy of our insurance companies. Remember, they work for you. This is why you pay your monthly premiums, for situations just like this. Have your insurance agent walk you through the next steps of the claims process, and what needs to be done according to Nevada State Laws. Make sure they go over details like filing deadlines. When dealing with your car insurance, make sure you keep notes of who you spoke with, and when.

Dealing With The Damage

After your accident, access the shape that your car is in, and whether it’s safe to drive. Your insurance provider can help you decide the next steps to get you behind the wheel again. Just remember the choice of how to handle repairs is ultimately yours. Regardless of the situation, what to do with your car is up to you.

You may have only sustained a minor fender bender. So work may be minimal, and you don’t want your insurance premiums to go up just for some scratches to the body’s paint. You may decide not to file minor damage with insurance at all.

Or, unfortunately, you’ve determined your car needs a lot more.  Whether you choose Hi Star to assist in your car repairs, know that you have the right to shop for multiple estimates. Just make sure that you do not choose a car mechanic just because they give you the lowest estimate. It may not accurately reflect the quality of work, keeping your car off the road even longer.

More Than Just Repairing Your Car

While you are shopping for estimates, ask what services a shop may provide related to collision repairs. See if the potential auto body shop offers any assistance or incentives. Some auto body shops can even help you with your insurance deductible or offer car rental programs.

If your car is immobile, ask if they can provide towing services. It it always a good idea to have a tow service on hand. However it’s sometimes best when an auto body shop can offer seamless services with all aspects of dealing your damaged car. It means less headache, and wait time if the same people are picking up your car, fixing it, and understand how to deal with your insurance company. If a garage can provide a one-stop-shop for all related needs, means getting your car back on the road faster.

Getting Back On The Road

Like with all bad situations, when something awful happens we’d much rather forget about it and go on with our lives.  But arming yourself with the knowledge of how to handle a car accident can help greatly reduce the danger and stress. Knowing what to do and where to turn gets it’s a step closer to getting on with your life.