Car accidents can be a traumatic experience, especially if you are visiting Houston. With heavy traffic and bustling roads, accidents are common in Houston, and they can happen to anyone, anytime. In such a situation, being prepared and knowing what steps to take can make a significant difference in ensuring your safety and protecting your rights. That’s why we have provided this Houston Car Accident Checklist.
This checklist created by Greg Baumgartner at Baumgartner Law Firm will help you through the difficult and stressful situation of a Houston car accident and offer guidance on what to do after an accident.
After an accident, taking certain steps to protect your rights and ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled to is important.
Here are some actions to take after a auto accident:
1. Check for Injuries
The first and most important step after a car wreck is to check to see if anyone is hurt. If anyone is hurt, call 911 for medical assistance. Even if you don’t feel injured, getting checked out by a doctor is still a good idea, as some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
2. Move to a Safe Location
Move your vehicle out of traffic if you can do so safely. Safely moving your vehicle will help prevent any other accidents or injuries. If your car can’t be moved, turn on your hazard lights to help warn other drivers.
3. Call the Police
Even if the Houston accident is minor, it’s important to call the police and file a report. This report will be important for insurance purposes. It can also help protect your rights if any legal issues arise from the accident.
The Police Determination of Fault is Not Binding
When you call the police after a car accident, they will typically come to the scene, investigate the accident, and write a report. This report will document important information about the crash, such as the date, time, location, and parties involved. The crash report may also include statements from witnesses and any available evidence, such as photographs or video footage.
The police report is crucial for insurance purposes as a report is an official record of the accident. It can help determine who was at fault and assist in the claims process. Additionally, if any legal issues arise from the accident, the police report can be used as evidence in court. Please note that the opinions of the investigating officer are not binding as to who is at fault.
Therefore, it is important to call the police and have a report filed, even if the accident seems minor. Calling officers can help protect your rights and ensure the necessary information is documented for insurance and legal purposes.
4. Exchange Information
Drivers exchanging information after an accident is required in Texas. Information to get includes:
- Name and contact information.
- Insurance company and policy number
- Driver’s license number
- License plate number
- Make, model, and color of the vehicle.
5. Document the Scene
Take photos or video of the accident to show damage to your vehicle and the other vehicle involved. Scene photos like traffic signals and points of impact, skid marks, and other facts should be documented if you can do so safely.
Shooting photographs will be helpful for insurance claims and any legal proceedings.
6. Gather Witness Information
If there were any witnesses to the accident, please get their contact information. They can provide valuable information if there are any disputes about the accident.
7. Notify Your Auto Insurance Company
Contact your Car insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. Your auto insurance company will help you through the claims process and provide information about your coverage.
When interacting with insurance companies providing only factual information, be careful in any statement interpreted as admitting fault. If you are unsure about what to say, it’s best to consult with an experienced car accident attorney.
8. Seek Medical Attention
Even if you don’t feel injured, it’s important to see a doctor after a car accident. Some injuries may not be immediately known. Documenting injuries is important for insurance purposes.
9. Keep Track of Your Expenses
Keep track of your auto accident expenses, such as medical bills, car repairs, and other costs. These expenses may be reimbursed by your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company.
10. Contact a Houston Car Accident Lawyer
If you were injured in the accident or have any legal disputes, it’s important to contact a Houston lawyer for a car accident. An experienced car accident attorney can help protect your rights and fight for full compensation for damages or injuries.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in Houston
- Distracted driving
- Failure to yield the right of way.
- Drunk driving
- Reckless driving
- Poor weather conditions
- Vehicle malfunctions
Tips for Avoiding Car Accidents in Houston
While Houston traffic accidents can happen at any time, there are some steps you can take to reduce your risk of being in a car accident in Houston:
- Avoid all distractions when driving, such as cell phone use or texting.
- Follow the speed limit and drive defensively.
- Allow more distance between vehicles.
- Never drive after drinking- use UBER OR LYFT.
- Keep your vehicle well-maintained.
- Be cautious in adverse weather conditions and adjust your driving accordingly.
What to Do After a Car Accident in Houston
In summary, here’s a quick checklist of what to do after a car accident in Houston:
- Check for injury and seek medical attention if necessary.
- Move to a safe location.
- Call the police and file a report.
- Exchange information with the other driver.
- Watch what you say.
- Document the scene and gather witness information.
- Notify your insurance company.
- Seek medical attention.
- Keep track of expenses.
- Contact a Houston car accident lawyer if injured.
Take Steps to Protect Yourself
Being in a car accident can be a stressful and overwhelming experience, but knowing what steps to take can help make the process smoother. Following this Houston car accident checklist can ensure your safety and protect your rights after a car accident in Houston.
Baumgartner Law Firm recommends that you check your auto insurance coverage and get Uninsured Motorist Coverage if you can afford it. Many people driving in Houston, TX, have no auto insurance.
Remember always to drive safely and be aware of your surroundings to reduce your risk of being in a car accident.
Contact the Auto Accident Lawyer at Baumgartner Law Firm for Help!
Contact the Houston car crash law firm for help with a personal injury claim.
6711 Cypress Creek Pkwy, Houston, TX, 77069