You are alive. And that is what matters the most. Remain calm and go through the following steps:
- Check yourself for injuries. You may be in shock. First and foremost, make sure you are ok.
- Are any other people involved? If so and if it is safe to do so, check on them.
- Find a safe area.
- Call 911.
- Wait for help.
- Exchange information with the other driver.
- Properly document the accident.
- Call your insurance as soon as possible.
- Was the other driver under the influence of drugs or alcohol? Check for the signs of impairment (see below).
The following numbers can be used anytime, even in the case of an emergency:
CASUALTY UNDERWRITERS (CUIC)800-333-2525
What information should you exchange?
Exchange the following info: names, address, phone number, insurance company, policy number, driver’s license number, license plate number, owner of each vehicle.
What should you document?
Write down the date, time, and location. It is also important to make a note of weather conditions, the estimated speed of both drivers, and a description of the accident. A diagram of the accident may come in use later on. If possibly, draw one.
Other info that may prove useful includes: any witnesses or passengers and their position in the vehicle, their phone numbers and addresses, the info of the attending police officer (their name, badge number, and business phone number), and the info of the tow truck driver (the company name, the driver’s name, truck number, business phone number, and address towed to).
If the other driver appears intoxicated, inform the police and make sure to gather as much information about them and their vehicle as possible.
Impairment brings the situation to a whole other level. Driving under the influence is against the law. There are 2 types of impairment, Drug Impairment and Alcohol Impairment. If you suspect that the other drive may be impaired, look out for the signs.
Alcohol Impairment Signs:
- Lack of Balance or Disorientation
- Slurred Speech
- Slow Reaction Times
- Decreased Reasoning Ability
- Staggered Gait
- Glossy Eyes
- Smell of Alcohol
Drug Impairment Signs:
- Bloodshot or Red Eyes
- Dilated Pupils
- Slurred Speech
- Lack of Coordination
- Excessive Energy
- Excessive Scratching or Picking at Skin
- Remain calm.
- Avoid arguing or getting angry.
- Do not admit fault or apologize. Do not make any promises to pay for damages.
- Make sure your tow is an authorized company.