Getting into a car accident is stressful enough as it is. Not knowing how to handle such a situation and not having the things you need to be prepared for it can exacerbate the stress even further.
That’s why we’ve put together this handy list to help you ensure that you are prepared for the event of a collision.
#1 - Keep proof of insurance where you can easily find it.
Knowing where your insurance card is in your vehicle can help reduce the amount of stress you feel immediately after a car accident. Regardless of the circumstances, you will be required to provide proof of insurance to the other driver(s) involved in the collision in addition to any law enforcement officers that come to investigate the crash.
Remember to update it every six months when your insurance company sends you a new card.
#2 - Keep a cell phone charger in your car and make a habit of plugging in your phone whenever you drive.
It’s very important that you are able to use your cell phone after an accident. Having your phone die after being involved in a collision can be a big problem. The last thing you want is to be unable to call for help when you need it most.
#3 - Always keep in mind that you shouldn’t apologize for the accident.
When faced with a stressful situation, it may be a knee-jerk reaction to apologize. Consistently remind yourself that this is not a good idea after a car accident. Even if the collision is not your fault, saying “sorry” can have serious implications for your personal injury claim.
You certainly don’t want your apology to be viewed as an admission of fault, but that’s exactly what saying “sorry” does. The insurance company can use that against you to avoid paying out the full value of your claim since they can argue that you contributed to the accident because you apologized afterward.
#4 - Keep a survival kit in your car.
The summers in New York are hot and the winters are cold. During the summer, you should keep several bottles of water in your car. During the winter, keep protein bars and blankets or jackets in the car also.
Make sure you have a working flashlight with up-to-date batteries somewhere in the vehicle. The glove box or center console are good places to keep a flashlight because you can reach them without having to get out of the car.
Pack a first aid kit so that you can immediately treat any wounds you sustain. Of course, you’ll still want to seek care from a medical professional as soon as possible if you are hurt, but if you are bleeding uncontrollably, you may need to intervene before you can get to a hospital for treatment.
#5 - Have traffic cones or flares in your vehicle.
Small orange traffic cones don’t have to occupy much space in your vehicle, and they can make the world of difference in the event of a crash. Flares can also be useful, but there is always a fire risk with the use of flares. Flares also have a limited lifetime, where cones can be used over and over again, making them a more sustainable option.
If you’ve been hurt in a traffic accident through no fault of your own, you may be entitled to compensation. Our team is highly skilled in car accident personal injury law and we have helped many others in similar situations. Let us see if we can help you, too.