Confusion usually reigns in the moments following a car accident. This can happen for a variety of reasons, not least of which is that the people involved in the wreck may be injured. This could also be the first time that the victims of the wreck have been involved in a car accident. Or, both of these factors could be involved. In any case, the way you act and the things you do in the moments immediately following a car accident are crucial, so let’s talk about some of the steps you should take during these critical moments.

What some people do after they get into a crash is panic. When they panic, these people will either flee the scene of the crash (which we can’t stress enough: don’t flee the scene!) or they will be angry and upset as they talk with the police or the people involved in the crash. The latter can lead to unproductive moments after the crash, while the former can lead to criminal charges.

After staying at the scene, make sure to check with everyone involved with the crash. Make sure they are okay, and call the police. If they need medical help, listen to the instructions given over the phone by the 911 operator. If they are okay, then exchange information with them.

You should take the opportunity to take photos of the crash scene and to talk to any witnesses who are comfortable giving you a statement about what they saw.

Source: FindLaw, “After a Car Accident: First Steps,” Accessed June 22, 2016