In a matter of seconds, your relatively normal day can turn topsy-turvy when, while out driving, another driver hits your car. The shock of this happening is enough to throw most people for a loop. If you know exactly what you need to do after a car accident, it can make dealing with the aftermath a little easier.
There are certain things every New Mexico resident should do following a car crash. Of course, if you find yourself seriously injured, some of these things may not be possible to do and that is okay.
Step number one: Check yourself and passengers for injuries then call for help
If you are in a position to check yourself and your passengers for injuries, do so. This information will help the response team know what they are walking into. After checking for injuries, call for emergency assistance. Police and rescue teams will have the ability to get you the treatment you need and then take the time to investigate the cause of the crash.
Step number two: Document, document, document
If you are able to move around the crash site, gather as much information as possible. Doing this may help you if you choose to pursue compensation. The following information would be beneficial to your case:
- Photographs of the accident scene
- Witness names and contact information
- Name, insurance details and contact information of the other driver
As previously stated, gathering information like this may not be possible if you are rushed away for immediate medical treatment. Law enforcement officials who respond to the scene will do their best to get this information. You can then request a copy of their report.
Step number three: Contact insurance
After a collision, even if it was not your fault, it is wise to contact your own insurance provider. You never know if the other driver's insurance provider will deny responsibility and refuse payment or fail to cover all of your expenses.
Step number four: Consider your options for pursuing compensation
The injuries suffered in a car accident can have an extremely negative impact on you and your family. If you have reason to believe that the other driver's negligence contributed to the event, you may be entitled to seek compensation for your losses. You can go about this in a couple of ways. Most of these cases settle through out-of-court negotiations. However, if that fails to produce desirable results for you, litigation may be appropriate.