Winter is, unfortunately, a popular time for car accidents due to slippery road conditions. The shock of colliding with another vehicle or object is jarring, but after you gather yourself, you should know what to do.
Check for injuries
Before doing anything else, check yourself over for injuries. If you have other passengers and you’re not too hurt to move, check them as well. If anyone is injured, call 911 right away.
Get to safety
If your car has become a hazard due to where the accident occurred, like the middle of a highway, pull to the side of the road if possible. If your car is undrivable, leave it where it is and get yourself off the road and to a safe spot.
File a police report
Even if it’s a minor fender bender, you’ll need to report the accident. The responding officer will talk to you and the other driver, document the scene, and fill out an accident report. Later, when filing a claim with your insurance, they may want to see the accident report.
Wait for help
If you’ve moved your car off the road, turn off the engine and turn on your hazard lights to warn other drivers of the accident. You should always keep an emergency kit in your vehicle, including a blanket and extra gloves and hat for cold weather. If you’re in an isolated area, you want to stay warm until help arrives.
Take pictures & get information
We don’t recommend using instant insurance claims, but you should take photos to document the accident and to send them to your insurance company. In addition, get the officer’s information and the other driver’s name, address, phone number, and insurance. Often, the officer will give you a copy of all necessary information, but if they don’t, you’ll need to take it down.
File an insurance claim
If you’re able to, you can start filing an insurance claim at the scene. That way if you need towing, your insurance company can arrange it. If the damage is minor and you prefer to wait until getting home, just make sure you have all the information you need for the process.
Car accidents can be stressful and leave you feeling frazzled, especially when thinking about getting damages repaired. If you’re in the Twin Cities area, bring your vehicle or have it towed to Crossroads Collision. We can help with your insurance claim and provide peace-of-mind service.