Unfortunately, wintertime seems to see a much higher rate of car accidents. If you are involved in a crash while on the road during the winter season, you should keep in mind these steps to take after a winter car accident.

Move to a Safe Place

After a crash, the first thing you should do is to move yourself to safety. If your vehicle is still in the path of traffic and can be safely moved, you should drive it to the side of the road, or off the road (such as into a parking lot). If your vehicle is disabled and still in the path of traffic, you should not remain in your vehicle but instead safely walk to the side of the road near your vehicle. Moving yourself and your vehicle to a safe place will help keep you safe and avoid creating an even bigger accident. 

Contact the Authorities

Next, you will want to check on everyone who was involved in the accident. If someone requires medical attention, you or someone else should call 911 to summon emergency medical assistance.

If no one has been seriously hurt, you can instead contact the police department directly to report the crash. In many cases, the police will send an officer to the scene of the accident to investigate and prepare an accident report. The police accident report is often a critical piece of evidence in car accident cases, so it is always a good idea to report a crash to the authorities.

Document the Accident Scene

If possible and safe for you to do so, you should use your cell phone to document the accident scene by taking photos and video. If you cannot do it yourself due to injuries, you should contact someone who can come. Make sure to record details such as:

  • Vehicle damage
  • Traffic controls
  • Skid marks or debris in the road
  • Weather, lighting, and traffic conditions
  • The condition of the road surface, such as the presence of potholes or black ice

Finally, you should also exchange information with each driver involved in the accident, as well as obtain contact information for any eyewitnesses. 

Seek Medical Treatment 

If EMS is not called to the scene or you decline to be treated by the paramedics, you should still see your primary physician or another doctor as soon as possible after the accident. It is important to promptly diagnose any injuries you suffered in the crash so that you have a more persuasive argument that those injuries were caused by the car accident and not by something else. 

Document Your Losses

You should also remember to keep copies of bills, receipts, and invoices for expenses you incurred after the accident, such as medical treatment or vehicle repair. If you take time off work while recovering from injuries suffered in the accident, you should also make sure to have copies of your pay stubs or tax returns to calculate your lost wages or income. 

Begin Your Legal Claim

Finally, you should report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible; your policy likely sets a deadline by which you need to inform your insurer of a crash to get coverage. You should also speak to a car accident attorney as soon as possible, as you may be contacted by insurance adjusters or defense lawyers. Your car accident attorney can begin looking out for your legal rights and interests. 

Contact a Rochelle Park Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Car Accident Case in New Jersey

Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a car accident in New Jersey? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at The Epstein Law Firm represent clients injured because of car accidents in Jersey City, Union City, Bayonne, Hoboken, and throughout New Jersey. Call (201) 380-7687 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 340 West Passaic St., Rochelle Park, NJ 07762.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.