What Happens When Someone Hits Your Car?
Getting involved in a car accident is immensely uncomfortable, and on many occasions, it can be scary, especially if someone is in the Des Moines, Iowa area. Read on to find out more, and contact a car accident lawyer at Tom Fowler Law for expert guidance.
Stop the Vehicle
The first thing people should do when someone hits their car is to stop the vehicle. On some occasions, the accident might have happened in a dangerous place people cannot stop in. If that is the case, then the person should only move it so that it's in a safer spot, and then they should stop.
Turn Off the Ignition
Many people don't know it but leaving the ignition on could be a safety hazard depending on how severe the accident was. Consequently, everyone should turn it off as soon as they stop the car, lest they risk getting hurt.
Breathe in Deeply
When someone is involved in an accident, they often have extremely emotional responses, which is normal. Therefore, a good way to manage the stress related to what is going on is to take a moment to breathe in and out deeply.
In some cases, people might become aggressive, defensive, nervous, or overwhelmed. Adrenaline is running through their bodies, which is why it is very common to react like that. However, the person needs to stay calm to take the necessary steps after they're in an accident, so breathing is a fantastic strategy to help with that.
Step Out and Mark the Scene
People that are in an accident should ensure that they are in a place safe enough to step out of the car to mark the scene. If there are other vehicles nearby, or if they're in high traffic, they have to be careful, so they're not accidentally hit.
Once the person manages to get out of the car, they need to set out reflective markers or cones, especially if the accident happened during the night. Visibility may be low and no one else should get hurt, so incoming vehicles need to be able to see that an accident happened so they can avoid it.
Call Emergency Services
Calling 911 is particularly important, especially if there are some people who have suffered injuries. At the same time, it doesn't matter how grave the injuries are – someone has to call an ambulance either way.
On many occasions, people might believe their injuries are not bad, but once they get medical assistance, they are very grave. Therefore, if someone was hurt, they need to contact an ambulance as soon as possible.
Get All the Important Information
Being in an accident involves gathering essential information about what happened. Therefore, the person should get the names of the people who saw it happen, as well as everything related to the car or cars involved and their drivers.
The person should, for example, get the drivers’ phone number, email, drivers’ license information, address, model of the car, and insurance information.
Take Notes and Pictures
If the person is not injured, they can get out of the car and take pictures as long as they have a camera or cell phone available, which would be ideal. Sometimes they may not, and in that case, they can take notes about what happened.
When the person is too injured to move, they should not try to do so. Instead, they could ask someone else to take pictures, and that evidence might be essential later on if they want to get legal help and file for a claim.
Wait for the Police to Arrive
Once everyone has exchanged contact information and the ambulance has arrived, the parties involved simply need to wait for the police to arrive.
Police officers have to talk to all the people involved and write a report, so they might ask a few questions. If a person wants to file a claim, the information might be important, so they should never try to leave the scene until the officers are done.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Lastly, the person should contact the insurance company as soon as possible to inform them about what happened, and they should mention all the details.
Many people often don't know how to act when someone else hits their car because they have never been in a car accident before. However, if they follow the necessary steps, their legal process might be smooth and their assets will be protected. Contact Tom Fowler Law for more information and expert guidance to get the fair settlement you deserve.