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Car Crash Tips for Teens

Print Your Own Checklist

LOOK FOR INJURIES

While you may not know immediately after the accident whether you are injured, it is best to do a quick check to see if you have any visible injuries. Make sure that you err on the side of caution because you want to get treatment for your injuries as soon as possible. You should also check to see if the other driver has been injured and call for help for them if it is necessary.

CONTACT THE POLICE

In order to document what happened during the accident and at the scene, it is necessary to have an accident report. You will get this by calling the police to come to the scene of the accident. The police will not make a determination of liability, but if there has been a moving violation, they may issue a citation. In many states, you will also need an accident report to file a claim with the insurance.

DOCUMENT THE ACCIDENT SCENE

You will only have one chance to document the accident scene as it appeared at the time of the accident. After the cars are cleared, you will lose valuable evidence. Assuming that you are uninjured and are able to do so, take as many pictures and as much video as you can in order to preserve the evidence. Once the cars are moved and the accident scene is cleared, you will lose the ability to show things as they were right after the crash.

MOVE YOUR CAR FROM THE TRAVEL LANES IF POSSIBLE

Depending on where the accident occurs and the condition of your car, you should try to move your car out of the travel lanes and to the side of the road. This will help keep traffic moving and get you out of the path of oncoming traffic. You will need to deal with various things at the scene of the crash, and you will be physically safer if you do not run the risk of being hit by an oncoming vehicle.

DO NOT TRY TO LITIGATE THE CASE OR ADMIT FAULT

Teen drivers will likely panic since they have never been in an accident before. However, even if it was your fault, do not admit it at the scene and let the insurance companies make that determination. What you say at the scene of the accident can be used against you later in time. In addition, do not engage the other driver to blame them for what happened. Simply obtain their information and have the necessary conversation with your insurance company.

CALL YOU PARENTS OR GUARDIANS

While it is a difficult call to make, especially if you were driving in their car, your parents or guardians need to be informed of the accident immediately. They may have a better idea of how to deal with the situation and what you should do after the accident. They may also be able to help you by making calls on your behalf, allowing you to focus on documenting the scene of the accident.

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF

If you are hurt, you need to get treatment. If you have been injured, it is always best to get treatment at the scene of the accident and should not refuse treatment. Not only is this critical for taking care of your physical health, but prompt treatment will also help you document your injuries for a potential insurance claim or lawsuit later in time.

TAKE EXTENSIVE NOTES

You will never be able to remember everything that you need to after an accident. Aside from the fact that names and numbers will come flying at you, the trauma of the car accident may make your memory hazy. Do not trust yourself to remember anything. Make sure that you keep copious notes at the scene of the accident so you have things where and when you need them in the future.

CONTACT YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY

The insurance company will need to know about the accident in order to begin handling the claims process and dealing with the other driver’s insurance company. Either at the scene of the accident or right after you leave the scene (obviously after you have exchanged information and called the police), you should contact your insurance company and give them the details that they need to know to start the process.

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Extra Tips

While it may be difficult, make sure that you speak calmly to the officer in a polite manner. You also do not need to speak with the other driver if they are yelling or menacing, but can tell them that you will wait until the police arrive. Do not let the other driver intimidate you as difficult as it seems.
Familiarize yourself with the location of the hazard lights in your car. Also, know where your emergency packet or first aid kit is in your car. You should know the features of your vehicle that you can use in an emergency and have supplies on hand.
Make sure that water and a notebook and pen in your car. You will need water if you are standing outside in hot temperatures while the notebook will enable you to take the notes that you need to at the accident scene
Make sure that you have a disposable camera in your car as a backup to take pictures if your phone is not working or is not available to you at the time of the accident.

Get These Facts

1. Other Driver’s Name and DL#

2. Address

3. Other Driver’s Insurance Company

4. Policy Number

5. Other Car Owner’s Name

6. Address

7. Witnesses Names

8. Phone Numbers

CONTACT

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