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4 Critical Steps: The First 24 Hours After An Accident

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Updated November 15th, 2020

Most individuals start their morning with the express intent of finishing whatever is on their “to-do” list before settling back in at home after another long day. Unfortunately, this is not always how their day will play out. There are nearly 130 million visits to

car accident

If you are in a fender bender the first 24 hours are critical for insurance carriers. Image courtesy of Adam Bartlett.Creative Commons license

emergency rooms every year, and 37.9 million of these visits are related to injuries.

This means that many individuals will end up injured rather than safely returning home, and several of these instances are due to auto accidents. That’s why every driver should understand the risks that they face and how to properly react after a wreck.

Chances of being in an Accident

It’s a sad fact that most people will be involved in some type of auto collision at some point in their life. In fact, insurance industry research found that the average American driver will have to file an auto accident claim once every 17.9 years. These numbers are no doubt disheartening, and this is especially the case for those who make it a point to be safe drivers. It’s important to remember, however, that even those who drive safe can be in a wreck when a negligent driver is involved.

It should be noted, however, that the chances of being injured or worse in an auto accident will vary by state. In research performed by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), for instance, it was found that there were only 6.84 traffic deaths for every 100,000 drivers in the state of Massachusetts in 2010. In less driver-friendly states, however, such as California, this rate jumped all the way to 11.43 per 100,000 drivers. Regardless of which state a person lives in, however, they need to know how to handle a car accident if it occurs.

taking the right steps

Taking the right steps after an automobile accident is critical. Image credit: Ian Murray.

Steps To Take After Auto Accident

No two wrecks are the same, but there are a few steps that every driver can take if they’ve been involved in a crash at the hands of a negligent driver.

1. Contact Police

– The first step, contacting police, is also one of the most important. A police report can go a long way when it becomes necessary to file a legal claim for compensation. This report can later be used as evidence of the other driver’s negligence.

2. Get Witness Info

– Another integral piece of the puzzle is getting witness information. The other driver and their insurer may try to argue that liability is unclear in the situation. Unbiased witness accounts, however, can nip this in the bud.

3. Visit Doctor

– This is the only way for a person to secure compensation for any medical difficulties that arise from their accident. If a diagnosis and related medical bills aren’t available, there’s really no way for a person to request compensation for an injury.

4. Find Legal Help

– Having an attorney at one’s side is also essential. This may not be as necessary in cases that only involve property damage, but when injuries have been sustained, a legal professional like a personal injury attorney will know the appropriate amount of financial recompense that a person deserves to ensure that they’re properly compensated for all present and future difficulties resulting from the accident. Check out some of the items that are overlooked when in an automobile accident in the video below.



The simple fact is that most people couldn’t survive without some form of vehicular transportation. Because of this, Americans throughout the country are at risk every day while on the nation’s highways. Even the best drivers can suffer a collision related injury, but luckily, smart drivers will know how to handle these situations in an effort to reduce the difficulties that they face afterward. It definitely won’t be easy, but being proactive can make it a little less painful.

LaGeris Underwood Bell

LaGeris Underwood Bell

A car accident victim endures much stress, but freelance writer LaGeris Underwood Bell understands that being falsely accused of fraud can increase the stress level exponentially.

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