A car accident doesn’t have to get worse once it’s over. Unfortunately, they sometimes do. Tempers flare and people act in irrational ways. You need to have a plan for what you would do in such a situation. Here are some basic tips to make sure that you handle it right.
Tip #1: You’re not a cop; unless you are, of course. Don’t try to detain any driver involved in the accident. If someone is determined to make a hit and run out of a simple fender bender, just take down their plate number. That’s what license plates are for. Never try to stop them from fleeing; you have no idea what you might be getting into and it may well be way over your head.
Tip #2: Stay calm. It’s important to anticipate that people will lose their tempers. There are some very basic conflict resolution skills you can apply here. Don’t get confrontational, but don’t admit fault to anything, either. If you’re worried, keep mentioning that you’ll both have to speak with the police when they arrive. It’s not a bad idea to remind a hotheaded driver that the police are on their way and you don’t have to make it into an aggressive threat for it to be an effective reminder for them to calm down.
Tip #3: Step away. If someone is getting angry and aggressive with you, just stay away from them. It’s better to keep your distance than to make it into a physical confrontation. If you have to, go into a public place until the police arrive. There’s no shame in it and, in reality, it’s the way adults handle things; at least the smart ones.
Tip #4: Contact your lawyer before your insurance company. You don’t want to try to explain the accident to your insurance company before you go over the accident with your lawyer. Your lawyer may even want to contact them on your behalf.
A good attorney is the best route to take if the other driver was negligent and caused the accident because of that negligence. Contact one and ask them about working on a contingency if you don’t have money. Most often, this is how these attorneys will prefer to work, anyway. It ensures that people don’t end up paying if the attorney couldn’t help them.