According to car-accidents.com, there were roughly 6.4 million auto accidents in the United States in 2005 alone. The total cost of these accidents adds up to $230 billion.
Looking at these huge numbers, it can be assumed that an average American is bound to have an accident once in their lifetime. Since accidents are not experienced on a daily basis, they cause persons involved to go to panic mode. A person who is usually very calm under most situations can go to panic mode and completely lose their temper or lose all sight of what is supposed to be done in this situation.
No worries though; here you will find a complete step by step list of what to do in case of an auto accident. It would be advisable to print these step by step instructions and keep them in the dashboard of your car. This will help you remember, the steps you need to take during an accident.
Here is what you need to do if you’re involved in an auto accident.
Step 1. Do not panic, stay calm. (Do not lose your temper and cause the situation to get worse).
Step 2. Look around and see if anyone is injured, if so immediately call 9-1-1 for assistance.
Step 3. Do not try to come to any conclusions yourself, instead immediately call the police.
Step 4. Collect the following information as best as you can.
a. Names of people involved in the accident
c. License plate numbers of all vehicles involved in the accident
d. Names of insurance companies and policy numbers of everyone involved.
Step 5. If your vehicle is not drive-able, remove and take all personal items with you, such as personal information, valuables and clothing.
Step 6. Call your insurance company claims service. (Many companies now offer online claims and handy apps for your phones to help out).
The above are the most generic instructions for auto accidents. The above step by step instructions are also approved by a major car insurance company (Nationwide).
If your insurance policy provides further assistance such as roadside assistance then you’re in luck. You can expect a free ride. After, your claim has been filed the next step you should follow is, to take your car to a repair shop. You can inform your adjuster (One will be assigned to you once you file the claim with the insurance company) of the shop and they can visit the shop to take the pictures of the car and start the claim. Your repair shop will give an estimate cost of the repairs that has to be forwarded to your insurance company. They will approve the costs in normal cases and your shop mechanic shop can get started on the work. Once work has been completed, go and pick your vehicle up. Your insurance will provide the payment to the mechanic. During all this hassle, you might be wondering how you are going to get around until your vehicle gets repaired. Well, that depends on your policy, if you’re policy allows for rental car reimbursement or not. If your policy covers it, you could get the money reimbursed for rental car costs. Keep these handy step by step instructions in your car all the time. They could end up saving you a lot of hassle and regret.