Did you know that every minute 4 people get injured in a car accident?

Black Ford with collision damage on the front left side of the car. Photo by Michael Jin on Unsplash

It's a startling statistic that reminds us to stay prepared. Whether it's a minor fender-bender or a major collision, knowing what to do after an accident can make all the difference.

1. Ensure Safety

Try to stay calm and collected so you can assess everyone's safety and get help.

A red ambulance in the image has an appearance of moving quickly. Photo by camilo jimenez on Unsplash
  • Check yourself and others for injuries. If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately.

  • After taking photos of the scene, if it's safe to do, move your vehicle out of traffic to prevent further accidents.

  • Turn on your hazard lights.

  • See a medical professional after the accident. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent. For peace of mind and for insurance purposes, pay a visit to your doctor.

2. Call the Police

Police officers can create an accident report, which may be needed for insurance claims later.

NYPD vehicle is visible at the scene of a crime Photo by Campbell Jensen on Unsplash
  • Call 911 and report the accident, even if it's a minor one.

  • Follow the police officers' instructions.

  • Avoid admitting fault or discussing blame with the people at the scene. Leave it to the insurance companies and the police to determine fault.

3. Exchange Information

Collect all relevant information from the other driver(s) so you can file an insurance claim.

Caucasian hand holds on iPhone showing it is 15:56 o'clock Photo by Oliur on Unsplash

This is especially important if police officers won't be joining you at the scene.

  • Exchange contact, insurance, and vehicle information with the other driver(s) involved. This should include names addresses, phone numbers, insurance company names and policy numbers, and license plate numbers.

  • If there are witnesses, ask for their contact information as well.

4. Document the Scene

Our memories can be unreliable!

Dark, snowy street with red traffic lights in the distance. Photo by Josh Hild on Unsplash

Be sure to:

  • Take photos or videos of the accident, including car damage, injuries, license plates, road conditions, and traffic signs.

  • Note the date, time, and location of the accident.

  • If necessary, provide a statement to the police and your insurance company about the accident. Stick to the facts and avoid speculation.


You are in a car accident and decide to document the scene. What should you do? Select all options that apply:

5. Keep Records

Good records are helpful when filing your insurance claim and legal documentation.

File folder on a desk with a pen, glasses and coffee around it. Photo by Amin Hasani on Unsplash

Keep all accident-related documents and information. This includes:

  • police reports

  • medical bills

  • repair estimates

  • correspondence with insurance companies and the other driver(s)

  • any photos and videos documenting the accident

6. Consult an Attorney

An attorney can help protect your rights and navigate the legal process.

Courtroom gavel Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm on Unsplash

Speak to a personal injury attorney if the accident involves serious injuries, significant property damage, or a dispute about fault.


You're driving on a busy highway when you witness a car accident happen in front of you. You stop your car and rush to the scene. You notice there are a few injured people. What should be your first action?

Take Action

An elderly man is sitting in a car stuck in traffic. He can see the highway signs ahead of him. Photo by Dan Gold on Unsplash

Remember, this Byte shares general guidelines. The specific steps may vary depending on your location and the circumstances of the accident.


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