It can be hard to know what to do next, and even harder to get back on the roads again. If you’ve been in a car accident of any kind and have sustained a minor injury, how do you recover from that? The answer is to stay calm, stay focused, and follow these 5 key steps.
#1 At the scene of the accident, never accept faultIf you are feeling pressured into accepting fault by the other driver, do not, under any circumstances. This could make you the liable party if the case progresses to court. Instead, don’t say anything, don’t become angry or aggressive, and stay calm. Getting worked up will only make the situation worse.
#2 Take pictures of the scene, write down details, and get contact detailsWhat you should do, however, is get as many details as possible as soon after your accident. You should ask the other drivers involved for their contact details, insurance details and anything else to get in touch with them. You should also take a picture of the scene (before and after if possible) before anything gets moved or the picture changes.
It’s also worth speaking to eyewitnesses and asking them for any contact details. This can help the authorities clarify who is at fault and precisely what happened.
#3 Make a claimYou’ll need to submit an insurance claim, and a personal injury claim. Every type of claim, from whiplash injury claims to road accident claims, is different and need treating differently. Getting legal advice will help you out in this scenario, just in case you aren’t sure what to do next.
In terms of insurance, there are a few types of claim - not at fault, and at fault, for example. If you aren’t at fault, your insurance company should have any car damage repaired through one of their own garage connections. This saves you the hassle of doing this yourself, and saves you the costs.
If you were at fault, however, you won’t get away with paying nothing. Your insurance premiums could increase, and you’ll have to contribute to repairs and other incurred costs.
#4 Improve the safety of your vehicle, if applicableWas the accident caused by a faulty brake light? Are your wheels not gripping the road properly? Whatever the case, see that your car is returned to 100 percent shape. The only good thing about this accident is that you will learn just how safe your vehicle is. If it was the car itself that caused your injury - i.e. no airbags, poor headrest - be sure to fix it.
#5 Learn from any mistakes you may have made, and move onOne of the hardest things about a road accident is getting back on the road afterwards. It can be tough to regain your confidence and start driving normally again. You have to try and overcome this, and get back out there. If you’re a new driver, be sure you’re familiar with the highway code and the rules of the road. You may have made a mistake, but if you learn from it, you’ll be an even stronger driver than before.
Image source: Pictures of Money / Flickr - Licensed for reuse under Creative Commons 2.0