Automobile accidents have the potential to take a heavy toll on individuals, physically, mentally, emotionally and financially. Their impact may last for years or even permanently. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that 32,096 fatalities from motor crashes occurred in the U. S. in 2019.
In the aftermath of a wreck and the resulting turmoil, it may be difficult to know what to do. There are certain steps victims need to avoid.
1. Leaving the scene
It is illegal in Massachusetts to flee the area where the accident happened. Even if the incident seems minor or the situation appears dire, departing generally only makes it worse.
2. Failing to compile proof
Documenting evidence is important. This includes taking photographs or videos of the scene and vehicles, as well as gathering the contact information and names of any witnesses. Even seemingly insignificant facts like the time, date, weather and other conditions may prove integral to a case later on if litigation is necessary. Having all pertinent information makes things easier in general when dealing with insurers or trying to obtain compensation.
3. Neglecting to call the police
The state does not require those in vehicular crashes to call the police. However, doing so may be beneficial since they provide protection and help with documentation. If the incident caused death, injury or property damage in excess of $1,000, the law compels those involved to file a Motor Vehicle Crash Operator report within five days.
Taking care to follow appropriate procedures and not do certain things after a wreck may save individuals time and hassle.