After you get into a car accident, you may be disoriented, stressed and injured. This is not a time when it is very easy to think clearly, but it is a time when you absolutely must think clearly in order to get the help and care you need. Familiarizing yourself ahead of time with potential pitfalls that accident victims can fall into can certainly help you avoid these mistakes when and if you are ever in an injurious accident.
Never move your car following a collision, unless moving it is a legal requirement and/or unless it is a requirement for safety purposes. Never stand in any area where you could get hit by a passing vehicle. This is a common mistake of accident victims and it can result in worsened injuries. Stand as far away from traffic as you can without leaving the scene of the accident. On that note, under no circumstances should you ever leave the accident scene as this is illegal and could result in legal charges.
Do not discard anything that could be evidence in your case. This includes bloodstained and torn up clothes, car parts, and defective products. Exit your vehicle if you are physically able to, immediately after the accident — especially if there is a fire. Never delay exiting your vehicle in order to call 911. Call emergency services after you have gotten out of your car and found a safe place out of traffic to call from. Finally, never agree to settle any matter of your car accident case without first consulting with a legal professional.
By following this advice, Santa Monica residents who get into car accidents can stay safe, protect their rights and get back on the road again as soon as possible.