Nobody wants to start their day being involved in a car accident on the way to work. However, sometimes it happens. And sometimes, in addition to sideswiping your car, the other driver may not even stop so you can report the accident. In fact, more than one hit-and-run accident happens every minute in the United States, according to the AA Foundation for Traffic Safety.
Often, hit-and-run accidents happen in a flash. If you are involved in a hit-and-run, you most likely won’t know what to do.
However, no matter what type of accident you are in, there are some common steps to follow. Here are seven of them:
- Pull over safely and call 911 if you or a passenger have been injured.
- Once you’ve called for help, write down what you know about the car that hit you. Did you recognize the make and model? What color was the car? Do you remember the license plate number? Even if you don’t remember the full license plate number, a partial number can be helpful.
- Talk to witnesses who saw the accident. If anyone stops to help, ask if they can describe the accident. Write down any details they observed. Also, get witness’ contact information if you need to contact them again during any insurance or injury claim process.
- If you haven’t already, contact police to report the accident within 24 hours to report a hit-and-run crime.
- Take photos of any damage to your vehicle. You want to document any damage from all angles.
- Call your insurance company. Have all the details you know about the accident ready when you call your insurance agent, so your accident claim can be processed quickly.
- Get your vehicle into to a body shop for repairs.
- If the police track down the driver who hit you, contact a personal injury attorney for a consultation.
Thankfully, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety also found that Minnesota has one of the lowest rates for hit-and-run accidents. However, hit-and-runs still happen, most often when the driver who flees the scene doesn’t have insurance or isn’t licensed. Following the steps listed above will give you the best chance to get your insurance claim processed quickly and get the proper treatment for any injuries you or a passenger in your vehicle incurred in the crash.