What to Expect When You’re (Not) Expecting A Traffic Accident
Traffic accidents can happen anytime, anywhere, and to anyone. Knowing they’re going to be impossible to forever avoid, the best possible thing is being prepared. Other drivers can always pull a surprising move, or road conditions may be dangerous, so on the roads, you never know what might happen. So, if you’ve just been in a traffic accident, what should you do? Read below to find out.
Before you get ahead of yourself and start thinking of insurance details, the damage to your vehicle, and how your spouse might take this, it’s worth focusing on safety. Making sure the accident zone is safe has to be your top priority. Exchanging details is pointless if there are trailers whizzing by you, so make sure you’re in a safe position.
A safe position extends to your health and safety as well. Any injuries you, or a passenger, might have sustained may not be immediately obvious, so once you’ve taken stock of the situation, make sure you’re alright. If emergency services need to be contacted, contact them. Health and safety is key here.
Insurance and financials
If the other driver has stopped at the scene, it’s crucial to exchange details as soon as possible. Gather as much information as you can, including names, phone numbers, car registration, and of course, the all-important insurance info. It’s important to collect plenty of this information – information is your best friend in a traffic accident (well, information and seatbelts). Don’t just crack open your Notes app and write down the rego of the other car, make sure you have a detailed account of everything which may be relevant.
You can never be over-prepared for a potential insurance claim, or more.
Whilst it’s not ideal, there may be a situation where fault is disputed. You think you were completely in the clear, and the other driver is swearing on his mother’s grave that you’re at fault. In situations like this, as unfortunate as they are, witnesses are crucial. Try to gather the names and contact details of any witnesses to the accident, as their recollections of events can have enormous bearing on future dealings.
Finally, use your phone to your advantage! We walk around with a little computer and camera in our pocket all day, so take photos. Make sure you’re armed to the teeth with the best information and evidence you can have, and you’ll be in the best position to ensure a fair outcome.
And use that phone to call the police, if necessary for the accident, and importantly, your insurance provider. You can never get in touch too quickly.
Looking to the future
No, we’re not suggesting you grab a crystal ball and predict when you might next be involved in a car accident. But it’s important to be on top of how the next few weeks play out, regarding both insurance and financial elements, and also, making sure to check in on yourself. Traffic accidents can be a rude surprise, and they’re a surprise that must be dealt with. But with preparation, a cool head, and a clear understanding of what has to happen, you can set yourself up to deal with any crisis.