Nobody plans on being in an accident. However, the fact remains in 2006, there were 2,575,000 people injured in car accidents in the United States. The chances of you being involved in an accident are far greater then you might think. Don’t plan on being in an accident. Plan on being prepared in the event you are.
Here’s what you should do. Take a deep breath. Make sure your car’s transmission is placed in park and that the engine is turned off. Place your hazard lights on. Check to make sure you are not seriously injured. If you aren’t, check any passengers who might be. Before exiting your vehicle make sure it is safe. If it isn’t safe, don’t exit. If you have a cell phone, call and report the accident to the police. If traffic remains heavy or you’re in a dangerous position, wait until the police arrive to exit your car.
If it’s safe, exit your car and check on the driver and passenger of the other car. If nobody is injured and the cars are obstructing traffic, move them out of the roadway and into a safe position. If someone is injured do not move the person or the car. If necessary mark the roadway with flares or cones.
If the accident involves injuries or if the property damage is in excess of $500.00, a report will need to be taken. You should call the Kentucky State Police or other law enforcement agency to investigate. If the accident is minor and the property damage is less then $500.00, you will not need to call the police. However, you should fill out a civilian traffic report. You can get one here.
Whether or not the police take a report, it is wise to get the name, address, and telephone number of the driver, all passengers, and any independent witnesses. Driver’s license and license plate numbers are also helpful. Also, take down any insurance information the other driver might have. Make note of any road, weather, or other conditions that might have contributed to the accident. You might want to look at the Kentucky State Police Civilian Traffic Report for additional information that might be needed.
If emergency personnel do come to the scene, have them check on you even if you don’t think you are injured. It is better to be safe. If you leave the scene and later develop pain or muscle soreness, call your doctor or visit the emergency room. It is not uncommon for injuries such as whiplash to develop much later.