Being in a car wreck can be a stressful and frightening experience. It can be difficult to think clearly and take appropriate action in the aftermath. Here are ten tips on how to be prepared and what to do if you’re involved in an automobile collision.
1. Keep a camera phone or disposable camera, pen and paper, flashlight, and a basic first aid kit with you in your vehicle.
2. In the event of a wreck, try to remain calm. Check yourself and those around you for injuries. If anyone requires immediate medical attention, make sure that Louisville Emergency Medical Services (EMS) has been called. If there is property damage but no known injury, call the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) to file a collision report.
3. Document the extent of the property damage by taking several photos. Do not move your vehicle until you have photographed the collision scene, unless a responding officer tells you to move your vehicle or if the collision occurred on an interstate highway or parkway. If the wreck occurs on an interstate and there are no visible injuries, then you must move your vehicle off the roadway to a place close to the scene without obstructing traffic as soon as you can do so safely.
4. If there are any witnesses, write down their names and contact information.
5. Write down everything that you remember about how the collision occurred.
6. Contact your insurance company to report the collision. Write down your claim number and the insurance adjuster’s name and telephone number.
7. You should cooperate if your own auto insurance company asks you to give a recorded statement to one of its agents or adjusters over the phone, but you should consult a personal injury lawyer before giving your statement. If you are injured, be sure to tell your insurance company during your recorded statement and describe your injury. You should not agree to give a statement to another driver’s insurance company.
8. If you are injured after the wreck, go directly to a hospital emergency room to be evaluated and treated. If you are concerned the next day because you are in pain or sore, go to an emergency room, urgent care center, or primary care physician to be evaluated. Numbness, tingling, or the sensation that your arms or legs are falling asleep could be signs of a more significant injury that may require medical attention. Document the name of each medical provider you see and the date of each visit.
9. Give your medical provider your auto insurance information. In Kentucky, your auto insurance policy typically includes at least $10,000.00 of No-Fault / Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. Your PIP insurance benefits will pay for your reasonable and necessary medical treatment related to the collision up to the coverage limit, regardless of fault. If you are concerned that you have been injured, it is in your best interest to promptly seek medical evaluation to ascertain what injury you may have suffered.
10. If you have out-of-pocket expenses for medicine or medical devices related to your injury, keep the receipts. Your insurance company can reimburse you for prescription and some non-prescription medicines and medical devices if you reasonably need them solely due to your injury.
To ensure that your rights are protected, call (502) 410-0404 to schedule a free initial consultation with Grover S. Cox Law Office if you have been injured in a car wreck in the Greater Louisville area or anywhere in Central Kentucky.