I’ve Been in a Car Crash - What’s Next?
Car crashes are serious, and can be pretty scary, whether your accident was a minor fender-bender or a major collision, the doctors at Buffalo Chiropractic and Physical Therapy work with car crash patients every day, and we have a few tips to help you if after an accident.
Are You Hurt?
Safety is of course your top priority after an accident. Make sure your and any passengers are okay. Then proceed with caution throughout the next steps.
Get out of Harm’s Way
If your car accident is minor, and you are able to, switch your hazards on and maneuver your car to the safety of the side of the road. However, if you were in a much more serious collision, or the damage to your car makes it immoveable, don’t try to drive it, and just try to move yourself out of the way of traffic.
If you or a passenger have been injured, it is important to call 911 as soon as possible. Even if no one was injured, it is important to report the crash to the police.
If your injuries require immediate care, such as a trip to the emergency room, then some of the next steps may not be possible for you to complete at the scene of the crash.
Stay at The Scene
Until the police arrive, do not leave the scene of the crash (of course, if you need medical attention, that does take priority). But it is important to have a police report for your records and to help navigate an insurance claim, if needed.
Take a Ton of Pictures
This one is important, as it will help you in the long run. Take pictures of everything at the scene of the accident, including the name and phone number of everyone involved. Get pictures of the damage to the vehicles, both inside and outside.
Make sure to also get pictures and records of the vehicles in the accident, including license plate numbers, make and model, and even car VIN numbers. Keep a record of the time and date of the accident, weather and visibility conditions, and anything else you can think of. Most cell phones have a voice memo app that you utilize for this, or your pictures on an iphone also have a timestamp as well that you can make a note of.
However, DO NOT share your social security number or coverage limits on your insurance policy with anyone on the scene of the accident.
If your car is really badly damaged, you may need to call a tow truck. Make sure to get the tow trucks credentials and information as well. Sometimes the police may call the tow truck, or your car comes with a driver assistance phone number you can call.
It's also recommended to call your car insurance company to report the crash - if it isn't reported you may have to pay for accident related damages out of your own pocket.
Start the Claims Process
Some insurance companies have moved their claims process to the virtual space, like through an app on your phone or a website. Your insurance company may even ask you when you call them to submit the claim along with any photos you may have taken with your smartphone along with other details.
See Your Doctor
During a car crash, your adrenaline is running high, and sometimes it is possible that you don’t notice that you are injured until later. Some injuries are urgent and require immediate attention. Either way, motor vehicle accidents can cause serious injuries,even from what seems like a minor crash, so make an appointment with your general practitioner, chiropractor or other specialist familiar with your health as soon as possible to get a proper examination.
Still Injured and seeking Conservative Care and Rehab?
Then it is time to give Buffalo Chiropractic and Physical Therapy a call. If you have been experiencing headaches, pain in the neck, back, shoulder, hips, knees, feet, legs, arms, or anywhere else as a result of an auto accident, BC + PT accepts No-Fault, as well as private insurance and can often schedule you within 24 hours of your initial call. The team of chiropractors and physical therapists at BC + PT are trained in whiplash traumatology and work with car crash patients every day. Give us a call today or fill out one of our contact forms to start your healing journey from your auto accident!