Here is something to think about: When was the last time you were in a car accident?
Car industry studies show that on average a driver is in an auto collision once every 17.9 years. So if you've had a clean driving record for a couple of decades, watch out - you're overdue!
Almost everyone who gets behind the wheel of an automobile will, sooner or later, be in an accident. Even if you are a terrific driver! When it does happen, you may be shaken up and not sure what to do next. So it really pays to plan ahead! Here are a few steps to take after you've been in an accident:
1. Pull over and call 911
This is always a good idea and should really be the first thing you do. Sometimes the other driver in the accident may try to talk you out of calling the authorities. Don't let them! 911 can dispatch medical help if required. They will also send a police officer to the scene. That officer can assess the whether everyone is safe, what was damaged, and make a determination of who was at fault.
2. Exchange information
If you are able to, try to collect critical information from everyone that was involved in the accident. That means names, driver's licenses, insurance information, and license plates. Don't forget that if you carry a smart phone, like most people do these days, you can use the camera on it to snap pictures of license plates other documents.
3. Document the scene
Still have that smartphone handy? Great, because it's a good idea to snap some pictures of the scene itself. Then, when the police arrive, make sure to ask if they will be filing a report. After that, it is time to call your insurance company and let them know you have been in a fender bender. Your pictures, phone call, and the police report help establish what happened for your auto insurance and any personal injury claims. Without it, it is your word against the other driver.
4. Consult a medical professional
Obviously if you are hurt you need immediate transportation to the hospital. If the collision was severe, you may even want to wait to move until paramedics arrive and evaluate you for spinal injuries. But even if you walk away from the accident feeling fine, you should consult a medical professional as soon as possible. Some injuries can take days to show up. This is especially true of back and neck injuries resulting from auto collisions. Don't assume that you're fine! The sooner you get checked out, the better.
So many of the folks that come through my door have pain and injuries resulting from a car accident. If you have been in an accident, I highly recommend you don't wait or take any chances. Call and make an appointment to see us today!
Yours in health,
Christopher B. Renne, D.C.
4111 Atlantic Blvd
Jacksonville, FL 32207