Vehicle accidents occur regularly throughout the state of California. Thankfully, the vast majority of vehicle accidents only result in relatively minor injuries or property damage. However, just because it seems like an accident is “minor” does not mean that those involved should take it any less seriously than other types of vehicle accidents. Here, we want to discuss the steps you need to take after a minor vehicle accident and why it is important to take these steps.
Often, when people get into an accident that they think is “minor,” they later realized that the problems caused by the incident are far worse than initially realized.
First, people often judge accident severity based on how much visible damage there is to the vehicles. It is important to point out that looks can be deceiving when it comes to vehicle accidents. Even if there looks to be only a minor dent or scratch, this could cover up major underlying auto body damage that could lead to thousands of dollars worth of repair bills. Sometimes people drive away from accidents only to later realize that the problems with their vehicle are more severe than they thought.
Additionally, when we get involved in accidents, adrenaline tends to course through our bodies. This can mask the severity of any injuries that a person may sustain in a crash. The signs and symptoms of many car accident injuries often do not appear until the hours and days that followed the incident, after the initial shock wears off. Sometimes, people leave the scene of the crash thinking there sustained no injuries, only to later realize they are experiencing a significant medical problem.
In the aftermath of a vehicle accident that seems relatively minor, it is still important to call the police and make them come to conduct a preliminary investigation. This will help ensure that the accident is “official,” and you will be able to get an accident report for the insurance carriers.
At the scene of any crash, regardless of how minor the incident, it is important to gather evidence that can be used to show what happened. Those involved should use their smartphones or another type of camera to take pictures of everything, including vehicle damage, injuries, traffic and weather conditions, skid marks, and more.
Additionally, if there were any eyewitnesses to the crash, their names and contact information should be written down. Eyewitnesses can provide valuable testimony to insurance carriers or during any eventual personal injury trial.
We recommend that any vehicle accident victim go to the doctor for an initial evaluation. As we mentioned above, the signs and symptoms of many car accident injuries do not appear right away. By going to the doctor after a crash occurs, those involved are ensuring their well-being while also establishing a direct link to their injuries and the crash.
If you or somebody you care about has been injured or sustained property damage in a car crash, you may need to seek assistance from an attorney. Please understand that even relatively minor vehicle accident injuries and property damage can result in thousands of dollars worth of bills. Recovering compensation in these situations can be challenging, but an Irvine car accident attorney will be able to help cut through the red tape and deal with insurance carriers.