If You Have Been in an Auto Collision: Here's Your After-Crash Checklist

Almost everyone will be in a traffic collision at one point or another.  While it is important to collect the appropriate information at the scene, this is often quite challenging under chaotic and unexpected circumstances.  This blog is designed to provide motorists with a checklist of things to do in event of a collision and its aftermath.  

In most cases, if you are in a collision, you should remain inside your vehicle until you are certain it is safe to exit the vehicle.  If the collision is not severe and your vehicle can be safely driven to the side of the road and out of traffic, you should do so.  Once on the side of the road, it may be safest to exit your car on the side opposite traffic.  If it is unsafe to exit the vehicle, use your cell phone to call 911 or ask another motorist to do so and wait for police or emergency workers to arrive.

Reporting Traffic Crashes

In nearly all states the law requires that all traffic collisions be reported to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), regardless of whether it was your fault or the fault of another driver.  Collisions on private property must also be reported.  If you report the collision to your insurance agent, he or she can report it to the DMV for you.  Use the checklist below to collect all necessary information from the other person(s) involved in the crash.

Protecting Yourself

If there are any witnesses to the collision, it is helpful to collect their names, phone numbers, addressees and get a brief statement from them.  Your insurance agent, the police, or your lawyer (should you later hire one), may want to get a statement from them later.  Write down the license numbers and description of other vehicles that appear to be involved in collision, especially if they attempt to leave the scene before sharing their information.  Draw a diagram of the crash scene, making note of skid marks, glass, fluid spatter marks, locations of damaged roadway, and other details.  If you have a camera of cellphone, take photos and videos of the crash scene, skid marks, and involved vehicles and other people.  This can be helpful if reconstructing the crash become necessary.

You Need an Attorney

When you have injuries resulting from a car wreck, you need professional representation by an attorney with the experience necessary to win your case. You need a lawyer who you can have full confidence in. To learn more, contact the Law Office of Ben Crittenden to schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

Ben Crittenden
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Devoted to advancing his trial techniques and communication skills on behalf of injured victims in Anchorage.
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