What Should I Do If I Have Been Involved In A Car Accident?

Your first concern should be your health and safety. You should always wear a safety belt. If you have the misfortune of being injured in a motor vehicle accident, you should seek medical attention immediately. Indeed, if you or anyone is injured in an accident, steps should be taken to summon the police to the accident scene so that first aid or emergency treatment can be rendered.

It is also important to obtain information concerning the other parties involved in the motor vehicle accident as well as obtain the facts concerning how the incident occurred. You should keep a pencil and note pad in your glove compartment for this purpose. At a minimum, the information you should obtain includes:

• the identity, including name, address, telephone number, social security number or driver's license information of all involved parties, operators or witnesses;

• the registration and motor vehicle license plate number of each vehicle involved, as well as descriptive information such as make, model and year of the vehicles;

• the automobile insurance carrier of each motor vehicle involved (not the insurance agent);

• the date, time, weather conditions and location of the accident, including reference to stop signs, traffic lights and intersections;

• a pictorial description of the accident scene with directions of travel of all involved vehicles is most helpful.

You must report the accident to your automobile insurance carrier and agent as soon as possible. This should certainly be done within one (1) business day of the incident. In most cases it is sensible to file a report of the accident with the police department of the town in which the incident occurred.

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