With the cool fall weather approaching and traffic on the roads increasing as many of us head back to school and work, it’s possible to see an increase in the number of car accidents on the road as people adjust to changing conditions.
While none of us wish to be involved in a car accident, it is helpful to review what steps we should be taking at the scene of an accident to maintain our legal rights.
What should I do to protect myself if I’m in an accident?
Remain at the scene;
Call the police if the accident involved injury or death, or if there was significant property damage (over $2,000);
Call EMS if anyone involved requires medical attention;
Exchange information with the other driver or drivers. Write down or take a picture of their:
– Driver’s licence
– Insurance information (i.e. the company name and their policy number)
– Licence plate number
– Make, model and year of their car
Take pictures of the scene of whatever you feel will be necessary to handle a possible legal claim in the future. It is important to take pictures of the original scene if you can as circumstances may change down the line when it comes to advancing your claim and presenting information about it.
- For example, these photos could include photos of yours and other person’s vehicles’ damage, your injuries, the weather, the traffic conditions, signs around the area, and more.
Collect information from any witnesses at the scene. You can write it down or make a recording of it. Ask for their:
- Full Name
- Contact information (phone and email)
- Description of what they witnessed
Be courteous to the other driver or drivers but avoid speaking to them any more than necessary to exchange information. Specifically, avoid speaking to them about what happened with respect to the accident, how the accident happened, or whoever was responsible for the accident. Leave these discussions for your insurance company and potentially legal counsel to handle down the line for you if you wish to advance a claim;
Once you can leave the scene – contact your insurance company as soon as you can after the accident to provide a report of it.
We here at Moustarah & Company hope everyone has a safe and happy back-to-school and back-to-work fall season.