Most people ride in an automobile on a daily basis. While the chances for an auto accident is very small on a day-to-day basis, if you add up the odds of an accident occurring over a lifetime of riding in a vehicle, the chances are actually quite high.
A sizable percentage of the population is involved in an accident at some point in their lives. Thankfully, due to advances in vehicle safety technology & legislation, it is actually quite rare for loss of life to be a consequence of an accident. However, the trauma from an accident seldom stops once the vehicle(s) in question are no longer in motion. These days there is considerable wrangling with insurance companies to decide who was at fault and who will pay for the repairs necessary for both vehicles to be roadworthy once again.
So, in this article the most common auto accidents will be outlined as well as the most common mistakes made afterwards. An accident can often trigger our fight-or-flight responses, resulting in some strange decision making at the end of the day.
Case 1: Fender Bender
Perhaps the most common accident out there is a simple fender bender in which two cars collide while moving at a relatively slow speed. These auto accidents seldom result in serious physical injury, but the repairs necessary can easily run into the thousands of dollars depending on what parts of the vehicle were damaged. Since people are seldom injured in these cases, it is often seen that one or both parties quickly become enraged due to the fact that someone is at fault for the damage.
Fender Bender Mistakes
Not Remaining Calm: It is important that once a fender bender has occurred to quickly remove both vehicles from the flow of traffic so a calm and collected conversation may occur depicted the next steps. Anyone involved should remain calm and refrain from verbally demeaning the other party or assigning blame. At this point, it is most prudent to simply exchange insurance information and proceed to your nearest collision center if the law in your area stipulates that as the next step. Losing your cool can make you lose sympathy with both the police and your insurance company, possibly resulting in you taking the full brunt of the case.
Accepting Blame: There are complex laws that govern various driving cases. In many jurisdictions, if someone hits a car from behind, they are immediately responsible since it is assumed that they should have stayed a reasonable braking distance away from the car in front of them. This site, https://www.kaplanlawyers.com/vehicle-accident-attorneys/auto-accidents/, suggest that anyone involved in an accident, should remain tight-lipped about who is at fault. While it might seem at face value that you may have acted differently to avoid the accident, legally the other party may be responsible for what has occurred. This is why it is important to not take fault before all of the details of the case have been examined. Essentially, there’s no point taking the fall for an accident that you aren’t even legally culpable for.
Case 2: Major Accident/Car Totaled
After minor accidents, major auto accidents like T-bones or head-on collisions are also unfortunately moderately common on the road. In these auto accidents, it is highly likely that damage in excess of $2000 dollars as well as personal injury has occurred. Because of this, police are very often called on the scene to collect evidence and ensure that no obfuscation of justice occurs. More often than not, it is actually required by law to inform the police instead of the two (or more) parties involved dealing with everything through their own personal insurance agencies.
Major Accident Mistakes
Not Calling The Police: Even in jurisdictions where it isn’t necessary to inform the police of a major accident, it is a smart choice to have the police on scene and document what has happened and how it occurred, with statements from both parties. These statements of facts will be necessary in any court or insurance based arbitration to show without a shadow of a doubt what happened and who should be found at fault for the damages. The police are an impartial third party whose records are taken face value instead of the case remaining purely as a he-said-she-said affair.
Failing To Collect Evidence: Now that most people have a smartphone on them capable of taking pictures, it is unwise to not take advantage of this fact and document as much as you can from the scene to later use to further support your case. If your vehicle has already been repaired by the time you seen the inside of a court or ask an insurance company to compensate you, these pictures are the only proof that the damage occurred in the first place. Not only that, certain damage only occurs due to certain events, so proving that the opposite party is at fault may directly hinge on the picture you take and the quality thereof. Ensure that all pictures taken are high quality, clearly show the damage, and if necessary were taken with the flash on should the accident have occurred at night time.
Not Seeing A Doctor: Even if you aren’t in pain at the scene of the accident, it is common that pain or injury can be delayed for some time afterwards. If you go to the doctor immediately after the accident, you can get in writing any possible consequences of the accident, this will come in handy if you plan on seeking compensation for long term pain and suffering afterwards. Also, if your injury results in your not being able to return to work for some time, if you don’t get a checkup immediately after the accident your workplace may suggest that you were hurt through some other incident and deny your claim.
Whether it be a minor or a major accident, you should always have a comprehensive plan in mind for what you should do next. Often, the statutes of law does not necessarily completely match up with how things occur in reality, so how you act after an accident can be just as important as the events that lead up to it. So long as you are aware of the legal implications of any vehicle incident and can act accordingly, you won’t have to deal with insurmountable long-term consequences. Of course, it can be easy to say the simple solution is to not get in an accident, but life isn’t always that easy.