What type of injury have you suffered?

Car Accident

  • Car Accident
  • Head Injury
  • Premises Liability
  • Products Liability
  • Truck Accident
  • Wrongful Death
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Call 24/7

(877) 880-4090



Scroll Down

What Should I Do At the Scene of a Car Accident?

No one wants to get in a car accident. However, statistics show that 77% of drivers will have at least one car accident in their lifetime, and most will have three or four. With that kind of odds, all drivers need to know what to do at the scene of a car accident.

What To Do at the Scene of a Car Accident

If you get involved in a car accident it is important to take steps to preserve your rights, protect your finances and support your case if someone else is at fault. 

Prepare Yourself for an Accident

Before an accident happens, make sure you prepare. Keep your proof of insurance and vehicle registration in your car. You may also want to keep medical information, such as your doctor’s name, health insurance information and any relevant allergies you or your family members have.

If you live in Utah, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the no-fault insurance system. For minor accidents, your own insurance coverage will pay for your injuries up to $3,000, regardless of who is at fault. Talk to your agent to make sure you have sufficient coverage.

Make sure your car has orange cones, flares or emergency signage to help keep you safe after an accident. Keep a notebook and pen in your car in case your phone gets damaged or lost. 

Safely Move Out of the Road

If your car is drivable, carefully pull it as far off the road as you can. Turn on your vehicle’s hazard lights and use flares or signs to alert other drivers to the presence of your vehicle. Be cautious about interacting with the other driver if you believe the accident was a road rage incident or the other driver may have hit you intentionally. Be wary of any tow truck drivers that you or the police did not call to the scene. They may be scammers.

Whether you can get your car off the road or not, do not stand on the road to examine your car or talk to the other driver. A driver who is not paying attention could hit you. 

Secure Children, Pets and Others

If you have children, pets, or other passengers with disabilities, mobility issues or medical conditions, make sure they are safe and do not leave them in an unattended car. If you have kids in car seats, leave them in the car seats. They could have non-obvious injuries that could get worse if you remove them. 

Check for Injuries

Check yourself and others for injuries. Render first aid if necessary and call 911. 

Examine Both Cars

If you are not seriously injured and everyone is safe, examine both of the vehicles for damage and take pictures. Be sure to photograph the impact points because these may be important for assessing fault.

Stay at the Scene

If you or someone else is seriously injured wait for the ambulance instead of trying to go to the hospital yourself. Otherwise, wait at least until the police come out or say that they are not coming. If you hit an unoccupied vehicle, leave a note with your contact information. 

Gather Evidence

Get the names and contact information of the driver and passengers of the other vehicle and any witnesses to the accident. Get the other driver’s license number, insurance information and car registration information.

Record the make, model, year and license plate number of the other vehicle. Write down the date and time of the accident, the name of the road and the weather and road conditions. Photograph or video record the accident scene, paying particular attention to skid marks, debris in the road and road hazards. 

Call the Police

If you did not already call 911, call the police or highway patrol to report the accident. Get the badge numbers of the officers who respond and ask when and where to get a copy of the police report. If the police do not come to the scene, contact the police department to file a report. 

It is always a good idea to file a police report. It is a legal requirement when there are injuries, a death or property damage that exceeds $1,500 in Utah or $1,000 in Texas.

Contact Your Insurance Company

Even if you think the accident is the other person’s fault, you need to notify your insurance company. However, if you have serious injuries, it may be a good idea to speak with a car accident attorney first. The insurance company will ask you questions about the accident and may use what you say against you if there is a dispute about the claim or a lawsuit. An attorney can give you advice about how to deal with the insurance company or deal with it on your behalf.

Do Not Discuss Fault

Do not talk about fault when exchanging information with the other driver, talking to the police or talking to your insurance company. Your insurance company will determine who it thinks is at fault based on the evidence it gathers when it investigates your claim. You may unintentionally harm your case by admitting fault or apologizing for the accident. 

Do Not Offer To Settle Out of Pocket

It can be tempting to try to settle damages out of pocket to avoid your insurance rates going up, but this can backfire. It may violate the terms of your insurance policy. You may also miss out on the chance to gather valuable evidence if you wait around trying to deal with the other party directly.

Additionally, even minor accidents can cause expensive hidden damage or injuries that are not immediately obvious, so you may settle for less than your damages or end up dealing with a person who wants you to pay for expenses you were not anticipating.

Do Not Post About Your Accident on Social Media

It can be tempting to share your misfortunate with your friends online, but the other party or the insurance company could use this against you. Do not post photos of the accident or your injuries. Be careful what else you post while your claim is pending. If you are seeking damages for injuries, those photos of your ski trip could come back to haunt you.

Remain Calm

If you think the other driver caused the accident, you may be angry. However, it is important to keep your temper in check. If you get angry, you may say something that could harm your case or get into a dangerous altercation that could lead to violence. If the other driver or passengers are aggressive, avoid them. The police should get their information when they arrive. 

Seek Medical Care

Not all injuries from car accidents are immediately obvious. Soft tissue injuries, such as whiplash, sprains and strains, may not become evident until days after the crash. It is important to seek care both for your health and for any potential insurance claim or lawsuit that may arise. 

Contact Fielding Law

Car accidents can result in serious injuries and property damage. If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries in a car accident, the team at Fielding Law can help protect your rights. Contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation.