One of the most challenging speeches that we may be asked to give is one in which we provide our audience with advice. The audience has come to hear us speak because they believe that we know the best way to handle a situation and so we’re under the gun to make sure that we provide them with what they are looking for. This means that long before we take the stage we need to do our homework and make sure that we have the answers that our audience will be looking for. As an example of how we could go about doing this, let’s take a look at what we’d tell an audience about how to handle an auto accident which was your fault.
The U.S. alone accounts for over 4.4 million car crash-related injuries a year. Numbers are only rising and they need attention.
Over one million people die from car crashes yearly, which amounts to 3,700 daily deaths. Based on these statistics, there’s something we need to talk about.
These numbers show that the majority of crashes are from minor car accidents. It’s easy to chalk big numbers up to big accidents, but the reality is everyone needs to know how to handle a minor car crash.
If you’ve slammed the brakes only to realize, “I got into a car accident, now what?” here’s what you need to know.
What to Do After a Car Accident Checklist
Even though a minor car crash is common, the aftermath has a certain protocol. Especially if you’re at fault, it’s easy to get frazzled. Knowing your next steps can limit your stress.
1. Check Safety
Take a breath. You’ve hit another car and you don’t know what to do. Safety’s a universal principle—make sure you’re okay first, then calmly get out of the car to check on the others.
Asking if the other person’s okay shows care and concern. They’ll have had their own stress response, and the first interaction can be uncomfortable. Showing that safety’s your top priority makes way for a civil conversation.
2. Move to a Safe Place
If you’re in the middle of the road, it’s not the best time to be having a conversation. Go somewhere nearby to continue with the next steps.
3. Exchange Information
It’s important to get the other person’s information to prep for your insurance claim. You both may want to take pictures of the damage to build your case. If the other party takes pictures and you don’t, they can use that evidence against you.
Having your own notes creates an equal playing field for you both to report to insurance. Important pieces of information include their phone number, license plate number, car make and model, pictures, and police records.
4. Notify the Police
Having the police survey the scene is important for your insurance claim because they’re an authoritative third party. Having a police report and documentation may help you in your claim, as it shows you followed proper protocol.
Police are also a resource to officially document your side of the story.
5. Notify Insurance
Should I call my insurance company after a minor accident? The answer’s yes.
Tell them while it’s fresh in your mind. Reporting accidents to insurance allows them to talk to the other passenger’s insurance, go over reports, and do thorough damage control.
Calling your car insurance after accidents is wise; remember they’re there to help. If you’re dealing with a difficult passenger and don’t know what to do, it may help to consider a lawyer. Whatever you decide, you’re not alone.
Minor Car Crash Control
It’s true what they say—it’s better to be safe than sorry. While no one expects an accident, it’s good to be prepared. Stressful situations hijack the rational brain, so knowing what to do before experiencing a minor car crash helps.
Remember to stay calm, especially if it was your fault. Be careful about what you say since you don’t know the other person’s temperament. Staying calm and neutral can make the process much easier. The most important thing is that everyone’s safe.