South Africa ranks among the highest in accident rates in the world, so chances of you being in one are high. Car accidents are always frightening, whether you are involved or are a witness, there is no easy way to deal with them. If you are uninjured or have witnessed an accident, there are certain things you need to do in the event. Below is a list of 10 things to do after a car accident.
This seems obvious, but you will be surprised what bizarre decisions people make when hyped on adrenalin. You need to stop your car and it is against the law to drive off form an accident scene if someone has been injured without the police attending to the accident.
2. Ensure safety
Make sure that you are fine and if you are driving with occupants, that are unharmed. If there are any persons injured, call for help.
3. Try stay calm
Car accidents are always traumatic, but you need to try keeping your cool in the situation.
4. Don’t say anything
This coincides with trying to stay calm after an accident. The initial shock of being in an accident can have you saying things that may be incriminating to you. Once the accident has happened, gather your thoughts and try not to automatically claim responsibility of the accident.
5. Call for assistance
Phone a family member or friend for help and If there are injured parties, call for an ambulance and for the police.
6. Give-and-take information
On paper or on your smart phone, receive and give details such as:
- Date, time and the place of the accident
- The registration number/s, car make and model of the other car
- Names, addresses and telephone numbers of the other driver/s and any witnesses.
- Name and telephone number of the towing driver.
- Which station you are to receive your accident report etc.
7. Assess damage
Use your mobile phone and take sufficient pictures of the cars, the accident scene and its surrounding areas.
8. Try gather other noticeable evidence
You should also be aware of things such as the others cars’ tyre condition, whether the driver is intoxicated or not and if you saw or a witnesses can tell you if the other driver was texting on their phone.
9. Notify insurance
You need to notify your insurance of the accident you have had. Share all the details of the accident, pictures, accident report and other relevant information you feel may be necessary. This is why it is so important you have insurance and don’t become like many of South African drivers that drive uninsured cars.
10. Get regular updates
Be sure to phone your insurance about the progress of your claim, where (if your car was not a right-off) your car is been repaired and other details you may need.
There is no way you can ever be ready for a car accident, but by having precautionary preparations will make the occasion less stressful.
Written by Busi Nhlapo