There were 3,564 deaths in California from motor vehicles in 2017. There are many car accidents that occur and we all want to avoid them. But sometimes accidents happen and you just may be wondering what to do next. Here are the four steps on what you need to do to protect yourself, your rights and your health if encountering this frightening situation.

1. Check for Any Injuries

After the car accident, try to stay calm and check yourself for injuries. Make sure to check any passengers in your vehicle as well. If there is a need for serious medical attention, call emergency services or have a bystander do so immediately.  Make sure everyone is safe and able to move to safety on their own or with assistance. Do not attempt to move anyone who is unconscious or not responding as they may have a neck or back injury.


2. Call the Police Immediately

After moving off the road to safety and checking for any obvious injuries, call 911 to report the accident. Do not leave the scene. Even if the accident is very minor you need to call the police to report the accident as it is important to have a legal accident report. This is important for your insurance company, and even more importantly to protect you from later legal issues that may arise from the accident.

3. Take Pictures and Collect Information

Don’t forget to take as many pictures as necessary. You can never have too many photos. Take a video of you explaining what happened, as over time you may forget details so it is vital to take a video as soon as possible. Take a video of the scene making sure to document the area and any other factors that may have led to the accident.  
Make sure to limit discussion with the other driver and never admit responsibility for the accident. If possible, collect information about the driver and any other witnesses. Get the driver’s full name, insurance company and policy number, license plate, the type of vehicle that was driven, and the exact location of the accident.

4. Contact Your Insurance Company and Document the Accident

Make sure to call your insurance company as soon as possible. Calling them on the scene of the accident is better if possible. A police officer might be able to give them a more accurate report. The insurance company may be able to walk you through how to document the accident. It is important that you file a car accident claim and to do that you will need the facts from the accident. If you feel like you need more extensive legal help, reach out to a law practice you can trust.  If you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, the lawyers at Bonjour, Thorman, Burns & Dahm are here for you.  (Here is a map to our Pleasanton office.)

Were You Recently in a Major Truck or Auto Accident?

If you have been injured in a vehicle accident, you are in a very vulnerable position. It is very dangerous to assume the other party’s insurance company will treat you fairly, even though they may pretend to do so. Insurance companies have an interest in minimizing costs and maximizing profits. Often, insurance companies are biased in their investigation and evaluation of a case. Hiring an experienced accident attorney can make a significant difference on how large a recovery you receive.  Contact us at Bonjour, Thorman, Burns & Dahm for a free initial consultation.

Our Experienced Auto Accident Attorneys Are Here for You!

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