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Being involved in an auto accident can be a trying experience ‒ mentally, emotionally and financially. Knowing the proper steps to take in the immediate aftermath of a crash can help. Here are six steps to take if you are involved in an accident.

1. Assess the Situation
Auto accidents can range greatly in severity from simple fender benders to those involving serious injuries and property damages. An important first step is to take a moment, calm yourself and assess the situation.

  • Are you in danger where you are at?
  • Are you hurt?
  • Does anyone else appear to be hurt?
  • Are there any witnesses?

These are all questions that you need to ask yourself before you do anything else.

2. Contact the Authorities
For the sake of safety and to help ensure that your insurance claims are processed smoothly, you want to contact the authorities and get them in route as soon as possible.

Some drivers don’t react very well to being involved in an accident and in this age of road rage, it is not a good idea to confront the other drivers involved.

3. Exchange Insurance Information
Once it is safe to do so, exchange insurance information with the other drivers involved. In most states, the police will also be asking for this information to fill out their report so this is a good time to collect it yourself. Your insurance company will need this information when you file a claim.

4. Document What Happened
To help speed your insurance claim as well as to protect yourself legally you want to document the accident as much as you can. If possible, gather contact information from as many witnesses as possible and ensure they speak with the police when they arrive.  Many cases turn into a he-said-she-said scenario and having corroborating accounts helps protect you.

Take as many pictures as you can. Start with wide shots trying to capture as much of the accident scene as possible and work your way in. Be sure to photograph skid marks, road signs and detailed photographs of the damages to all vehicles involved.

5. Call Your Insurance Company or Agent
It doesn’t matter if you feel that you were at fault or not, you should contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Your insurance company is going to require an accident report and other documentation in order to process your claim. Don’t have an agent? Contact RC4 Insurance Agency, LLC today.

6. Get a Medical Exam
After an auto accident, your adrenaline likely will be pumping. You may be scared, excited or even in mild shock. Those involved in accidents may be injured, even if feeling fine at first. Getting medical attention can go a long way toward protecting you later.

The odds of having a car accident at some point in your lifetime are high. Knowing what to do immediately after an accident can help you and your auto insurance company protect your rights and help the claim process go smoothly.

  • Article From Selective Insurance