Here’s what to do when you’re involved in a car accident in Mississauga or anywhere in Ontario:
An unexpected car accident can leave you confused and displaced. It’s important to have the knowledge of what to do post-accident.
Here’s what you can do before the accident:
- Have a first aid kit in the car. It’s always good to have one of these in case you or someone you see while driving is in distress.
- Keep important documents such as drivers license, insurance card, and ownership in an easily accessible area in your vehicle.
- Have your phone with you and ensure it is charged.
- Keep all loose items in the trunk, center console, or glovebox.
Here are a few steps to follow during an accident:
- If your vehicle is involved in a collision you must stop or you may be subject to criminal prosecution.
- Stop your vehicle and step out
Ensure your car is no longer moving, turn off the engine, shift into park, and put on your handbrake. Try to not panic and take some deep breaths. If you have a cellular device it is a good idea to take pictures of the scene. When it is safe to do so, you can proceed to step 3.
- Call the police
If there are any injuries you should call 911 immediately and police will arrive on scene to take a police report. Additionally, if there are no injuries, but the combined damage on both vehicles appears to be less than $2000, then the Police may not show up. In this case you should report the collision to a Collision Reporting Centre within 24 hours.
- Move to a safe area (if possible)
If it’s safe to do so and you’re not seriously injured, it is best the move your car to the shoulder rather than keep it in the middle of the road or in a live lane. However, if this is not possible it is good to turn on your hazards to warn other drivers.
- Check on everyone involved
Check to see if anyone is injured and call 911 if anyone may be injured. Even an injury which may seem minor such as a headache or dizziness should be checked out by a health care professional.
- Gather all involved parties’ information
Exchange information with involved parties: drivers license, insurance, ownership.
- Document the scene
Feel free to audio and/or video record conversations at the scene. Take pictures of the scene if you have a cellular device or camera.
- File your insurance claim
Call your insurance company as soon as possible after the accident and inform them. Ask them for the next steps.
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