What to Expect After a Car Accident


Nobody gets behind the wheel with the plan or expectation to get into a car accident, so when they do happen, they usually come as quite a shock. It’s very common to panic and feel overwhelmed in these situations, not knowing what to do or how to handle everything that lies ahead of you.

While it’s not exactly fun research to do, it’s a good idea to take in some information about how to handle a car accident, so that you can feel a little more aware and prepared in the occasion that this is something you need to face.

Here’s everything you can expect after being involved in a car crash.

First Steps

First of all, it’s important that you check yourself, any passengers in your vehicle, and other involved parties to make sure that everyone is okay. If you identify any serious injuries, call an ambulance right away and call 911 too. Don’t be afraid to ask what should the police do at an accident scene if you’re not sure about their role.

Next, do your best to move yourself, the vehicles, and everyone and everything else into a safe location so that you’re not obstructing flowing traffic. Use your hazards if necessary to alert other drivers on the road that there is an issue. While you’re still at the scene, gather as much evidence as you can.

Medical Attention

Once you’ve left the scene and dealt with the immediate admin, you should prioritize getting a medical check. This is, of course, especially important if you’re injured. However, even if you don’t feel or see any visible wounds or injuries, you should still schedule a check-up to make sure there aren’t any internal or late-onset issues.

Make sure to adhere at any and all medical advice you receive from your healthcare practitioner, and to get plenty of rest in the days after your accident. If you feel any aches or pains, make sure to stretch and you might also want to see a physiotherapist afterwards.

Reporting the Incident

You’ll also want to make sure that you formally report the incident as soon as possible, for legal reasons. If you don’t make contact with the authorities at the scene of the accident, you’ll likely need to visit a police station to formally file your report.

Provide the police with as many details about the incident as possible, and give over any evidence you collected, such as photographs, notes about the weather and road conditions, and the contact details of any witnesses.

Dealing with Insurance Companies

The next people to get in touch with will be your insurance company, regardless of whether or not your car has damage, and regardless of who was at fault in the accident.

At this stage, be cautious of what you say and avoid admitting fault or saying anything that might implicate you until you have spoken to a legal professional who can give you advice. However, you can use this opportunity to ask questions about your claim and find out how long the claim will take to settle.

Car Repairs and Other Damage

If your car is seriously damaged, you’ll either need to have it repaired or replaced, which can be a lengthy process. This means that you will probably need to act quickly to make alternative transport arrangements for getting to work, school, etc. (if you will be in the condition to be going to work in the first place).

Find out the details about the damage to your car, how long it will take for things to be sorted out, and ask your insurance whether they will cover a rental car for the duration of the process.

Emotional and Mental Repercussions

Finally, expect to go through a bit of an emotional time after a car accident. These incidents can cause so much pain – you might have lost someone in the crash, or someone in the other vehicle might not have made it which can be equally difficult to process.

Even if there were no fatalities, any injuries or just the emotional impact of the incident can be a lot to cope with all at once. Make sure you take time to recover physically and mentally as well – rest, talk about how you’re feeling, engage in hobbies that make you feel better, and manage your stress. If you find that you’re dealing with trauma after your accident, don’t be afraid to reach out for professional help.

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