According to the latest crash statistics from ICBC, the Lower Mainland has averaged 200,000 automotive accidents per year since 2015. Fortunately, most of these accidents only involve damage to the vehicle and not the occupants.
If you become involved in an auto accident in Richmond or other areas in Metro Vancouver, there are steps you can take to ensure everyone stays safe while making the right decisions at the scene.
NEVER leave the scene of an accident, no matter how minor the incident may be.
2. stay calm
It’s completely natural to feel an initial rush of emotions immediately after a crash. Take a few deep breaths so you can remain composed and make rational decisions.
3. assess injuries
- Check yourself for injuries. If injured, call 911 and try not to move
- If you’re ok to move, check on the status of other passengers and occupants of other vehicles
- Don’t move seriously injured people
4. Pullover to safety
If the damage is minor and it’s possible to do so, quickly move the vehicles and everyone to a safe area off the road.
5. Call 911
If the accident is serious, call 911 or have someone else call emergency services on your behalf.
6. Wait for help
Turn off your vehicle and switch on your hazard lights. If you have an emergency vehicle kit, set up warning triangles, flares, or reflectors to warn oncoming traffic.
7. Exchange information
Important information to obtain from all parties involved in the accident:
- Phone Numbers
- Driver’s license numbers
- Insurance company name and policy number
- License plate numbers
- Type, colour, and model of all vehicles
8. Document the accident
Documenting the accident allows you to share recorded evidence with your insurance company during the claims process to support your claim.
- Take Pictures
- Any visible damage to all vehicles from multiple angles
- Any visible injuries to yourself and/or passengers
- The scene of the accident (take notes on how it happened and sketch the scene if taking a photos aren’t feasible)
- The license plates of all vehicles
- If there are willing witnesses, collect their contact information
9. Limit discussion
Refrain from interacting with the other parties to discuss the fault of the accident. Any discussion should be limited to law enforcement and your insurance company.
10. Report the accident to insurer
Regardless whether you’re a novice driver or seasoned driver, a car crash can be a difficult situation for anyone. Taking the appropriate post-accident precautions as outlined above may help prevent unnecessary stress. This allows you to focus on working with your insurance company to get your vehicle repaired as soon a possible.
Disclaimer: The information presented in this blog post is general information only. Every vehicle repair situation is unique and requires an independent assessment. Please contact your auto body shop for an accurate diagnosis of your repair needs.