Most fender benders are minor accidents with little or no property damage, which can lull you into a sense of security. But once it happens, it is not uncommon to not know what to do if you get in a fender bender. Here is a comprehensive list of steps.
If you have been in a fender bender and are unsure of your next steps, consult an experienced Atlanta Car Accident Attorney.
Move Your Vehicle
Always move your vehicle to a safer location away from the road, especially if the accident happened on a busy highway. Doing so allows traffic to flow normally and reduces the risk of a second collision. Once you are parked at a safe distance, you can also walk away from the car if it shows signs of smoking.
Check for Injuries
The adrenaline rush that follows a collision can mask your pain and injury symptoms. The next thing you should do is assess yourself for injury thoroughly, paying attention to your head, back, limbs, and chest. If there were other people involved in the accident, check on them too. Call 911 immediately if someone has been severely injured.
Call the Police
Most states require you to report a car accident to the relevant authorities if it causes injury or property damage. Always call the police even if you are unsure whether your fender bender falls into this category. If you don’t, you may harm your chances of pursuing damages if necessary.
As you wait for the police, exchange information with the other driver party involved in the accident. Ask for and record their name, contact information, license plates, and insurance details. You can also record the make, model, year, and color of their vehicle.
It is almost impossible to gauge the extent of damage caused by a fender bender at first glance. You may have sustained late-appearing injuries, or your car could have hidden damage. To protect your eligibility to seek compensation, you will need to collect evidence of the accident, such as:
- Pictures or video clips of the scene, your injuries, and property damage
- Contact information of willing witnesses
- A copy of the police report
Seek Medical Attention
Contrary to popular belief, you can’t always walk away from a fender bender unharmed. Make sure to visit your doctor of the closest hospital once you talk to the police at the accident scene. Do this even if you do not feel any pain and have no visible symptoms.
Inform Your Insurer
Most insurers require that you inform them if you are involved in a car accident, no matter how minor. Once you have seen a healthcare provider, contact your insurer, and report the accident. Be sure to avoid making any official statements before consulting your attorney.
Consult an Atlanta Car Accident Attorney
Now that you know what to do if you get in a fender bender, you should note that legal representation is vital to protecting your eligibility for compensation. Ponton Law is dedicated to securing favorable results for all our clients. If you have been involved in a fender bender, contact us on (404) 860-2454 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Atlanta Car Accident Attorney.