According to the Department of Transportation, which oversees the observance of daylight saving time, the Uniform Time Act of 1966 established the practice of switching clocks as we know it today. The DOT says moving the clock forward by an hour saves energy by providing an extra hour of sunlight, reducing the need to use household electricity for lighting. The agency says it also prevents traffic injuries by making it easier to commute during the daylight, and helps cut crime because “more people are out conducting their affairs during the daylight rather than at night, when more crime occurs.”
If you are involved in a traffic accident in San Diego you might need help from a San Diego car accident attorney. Here are some important things to do if you are involved in a traffic accident.
STEP 1: CHECK YOURSELF FOR INJURIES.
If you’re injured, call 911 or ask someone else to do so. If you’re seriously injured, try not to move, and wait for emergency personnel.
STEP 2: CHECK ON THE WELL-BEING OF YOUR PASSENGERS.
STEP 3: GET TO SAFETY.
If you’re able to, move to the side of the road or a sidewalk. If your car is safe to drive and is causing a hazard where it is, pull it to the side of the road. Otherwise, leave it where it is and get yourself to safety.
STEP 4: CALL 911.
Whether an accident is considered a minor fender bender or a major collision, calling the police is important — and in some states, it’s legally required. The responding officers will fill out an accident report and document the scene. If the police can’t come to the scene of the accident, you can go to the nearest police station and complete a report yourself, according to the III. When you file a claim with your insurer, they may ask for a copy of the police report to help with the claims process.
STEP 5: WAIT FOR HELP.
Turn off your engine, turn on your hazard lights and use the road flares in your emergency road kit to warn other vehicles to slow down.
STEP 6: EXCHANGE INFORMATION.
After making sure you and any passengers are uninjured, exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver. According to the III, here’s the most important information drivers should exchange after an accident:
- Full name and contact information
- Insurance company and policy number
- Driver’s license and license plate number
- Type, color and model of vehicle
- Location of accident
Avoid discussing fault when going over the facts with the other driver. When you file an insurance claim, the adjuster reviewing your claim will determine who’s at fault based on an inspection of the vehicles/property damaged, information provided by you and the other parties involved in the accident, and any supporting documentation, like the police report or photographs from the scene.
STEP 7: DOCUMENT THE ACCIDENT.
In order to help protect yourself, the III recommends taking the following steps:
- Identify the officers.
Once the police arrive, get the name and badge number of all responding officers.
- Get a copy.
Ask the police officers present where you can obtain a copy of the accident report. Your insurer may ask for a copy of the report when you file a car insurance claim.
- Take pictures.
Document the accident thoroughly by taking pictures of your vehicle from different angles, showing the damage done to both cars. It might also be a good idea to take pictures of the other car’s license plate. You may be able to use this during the claims process to help support your claim.
- Take down names.
Write down the names and addresses of all parties involved, including any passengers in the other vehicle.
- Talk to witnesses.
If there were any witnesses to the accident, take down their names and their contact information, as well.
To help keep all of this documentation in order, you can keep this checklist in your vehicle.
STEP 8: NOTIFY YOUR INSURER AND START THE CLAIMS PROCESS.
You may want to call your insurance agent while you’re at the scene. That way, they can tell you exactly what they will need to in order to process your claim.
An accident can leave even the most seasoned driver frazzled, but following these steps may help protect you from unnecessary worries. That way, you can focus on working with your insurance company to get your vehicle repaired as smoothly and as quickly as possible
If you are injured and the accident was not your fault you may want to consult with a personal injury lawyer. Contact the law offices of Melinda J Helbock A.P.C to see if we can help.
Allstate Insurance Company