Car accidents can be unsettling and disorienting, but knowing what to do immediately afterwards can protect your safety and rights. If you’re involved in a car accident in Kentucky, follow these critical steps.
Table of Contents
Immediately after the accident, check yourself and others for injuries. Do not attempt to move if you’re severely injured. Movement can exacerbate your condition.
If the cars are operable and it’s safe, move them to the side of the road to avoid blocking traffic or risking further collisions. Use hazard lights, flares, or warning triangles to alert other drivers.
Contact Emergency Services
Regardless of severity, it’s often required by law to report car accidents. When you call 911, they will dispatch police and medical services if needed. The police can provide an official report that may assist with insurance claims.
Stay at the scene until help arrives. Leaving the scene of an accident, especially when there are injuries or significant property damage, can result in legal consequences.
Gather names, addresses, phone numbers, insurance company details, and license plate numbers from all drivers involved. Be polite, but avoid discussing fault or liability.
If there are witnesses, get their contact information. They can provide valuable statements if there’s a dispute about the accident’s events.
Document the Scene
Use your smartphone to take pictures of the accident scene, vehicle damages, and any relevant road conditions or signs.
Write down the time, date, and weather conditions. Also, jot down how the accident happened, as details can become unclear over time.
Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. Provide them with the information you’ve gathered and any evidence you’ve documented.
Ask about your coverage. Kentucky operates under a “choice no-fault” insurance system, which means you can choose to reject no-fault insurance when you first buy a policy.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if you do not think you are injured, it’s essential to seek medical attention. Injuries from car accidents can manifest hours or days later.
Keep records of any medical treatments received, as this information may be relevant for insurance claims or legal action.
Know Your Rights
Consider consulting a personal injury attorney. A top-rated Louisville car accident attorney can advise you on your rights and help you navigate the claims process if necessary.
Do not admit fault or sign any documents from your or the other party’s insurance company without legal advice.
Report to the DMV
Kentucky law requires drivers to file a report with the Kentucky State Police if there are injuries, fatalities, or property damage exceeding a certain amount. Check the current threshold to see if this applies to your situation.
By following these steps, you can ensure that you handle a car accident in Kentucky responsibly and with your best interests in mind. Remember, the aftermath of a car accident is about protecting your safety, rights, and future.