Although unpleasant to consider, it is a good idea to be aware of exactly what to do immediately after a car crash, if not for the benefit of your car insurance claim, then at least for your safety. These moments can be disorientating, confusing, and stressful, but being sure of the correct procedures can save you from further complications well after it’s over.
The first thing to remember after any car accident, no matter how unserious it seems, is to stop safely in order to assess any damage that may have occurred to any vehicles or property. Driving away without stopping might later be viewed as negligent by another party and you may be subject to arrest. If you are on the hard shoulder of the motorway and need to wait for assistance, driver and passengers should try to wait at a safe distance away from the vehicle and road.
Assuming that no-one is injured and the emergency services don’t need to be notified, you should then get the details of everyone involved, as well as witnesses. This includes full names and telephone numbers, but also addresses and the registration plates of their vehicles. If you are the driver then you must also be prepared to give the details of your insurance company, your insurance certificate, and your policy number if any are asked of you.
After this, it is then wise to make a note of the accident scene. It is best to be as detailed as you possibly can and should involve drawing a diagram or sequence of sketches showing the chain of events including the position of vehicles and witnesses. Recently mobile phones and digital cameras have also been used to keep a record of any significant aspects (such as damage or weather etc) of the scene directly after an accident.
Finally, one of the most important things to remember concerning insurance is to not admit liability or offer any financial aid as this may render you car insurance policy void. You should remember that faults are always best decided upon after the investigation and discussion of the relevant insurers as they can take in every aspect of the incident.