Getting into a car accident can be a traumatic experience, whether it is your fault or not. In this moment of chaos, it’s critical that you stay calm and take a step-by-step approach to the aftermath of the collision.

You never know when an accident will happen, so it’s important to know what to do when involved in a collision, no matter the level of severity. 

Steps to take after an accident

  1. STOP. Whether you or the other driver is at fault, you need to stay on the scene. You could face hit-and-run charges if the accident is ruled your fault.
  2. Check for injuries. You should check for any injuries immediately following the accident. This includes yourself, your passengers and everyone in the other driver’s car. Even if an accident seems minor and there are no apparent injuries, it’s still a good idea to call the authorities.
  3. Move to safety. To prevent further accidents, you’ll want to move to safety if it isn’t safe to stay at the scene – on a busy freeway, for example.
  4. Notify the police. Call 911 or ask someone else to if you are unable to do so.
  5. Document the scene. Somebody should take pictures of the accident. If you can do so, take photos from all possible angles. Talk to any witnesses and take note of what they saw.
  6. Get the other drivers information. If the other driver is still at the scene, get their insurance information.
  7. Call your insurance company. They need to know that you’ve been in an accident and will want to send somebody out to appraise the damage to your car.

You should also call an attorney after a car accident. Many people don’t know what to do or what to expect after an accident, so it can help to have a car accident attorney to guide you through the process.