The sudden impact of a car accident can leave drivers in a state of shock. A person’s brain goes into safety mode during traumatic events, which can impair decision making. Kentucky residents recently in a car crash may face legal consequences unless they keep a clear head.

When a car accident occurs, Kentuckians must assess the situation and help the injured. Drivers who keep a checklist of steps to take after getting into a car accident can effectively render aid and avoid a possible hit-and-run charge.

Follow these steps for reporting and care

When a crash occurs, the increased adrenaline and potential for injury can prevent drivers from making responsible decisions. Kentuckians who take these steps will stay safe and help those who suffered injuries in the accident:

  1. Remain at the scene: Even if the car accident seems minor, drivers should not leave the scene until instructed by authorities. Leaving immediately is not only suspicious but could render a hit-and-run charge.
  2. Help the injured: Drivers should check the passengers of their car for injuries and try to help in any way. If everyone is okay, a driver can then check for injuries among the other vehicles.
  3. Call 911: Someone must call 911 if anyone suffered injuries. Kentucky law requires that drivers report car accidents that result in death, injury or over $500 in property damage.
  4. Exchange relevant information: Drivers must exchange identifying information, including name, contact info, driver’s license number, Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), and insurance policy information. Refrain from commenting on the accident or apologizing as this may indicate an admission of fault.
  5. Collect evidence: Authorities, lawyers and insurance adjusters will examine all evidence to determine what happened and how to assign fault. Drivers can contribute by taking as many photos and videos of the scene as possible. The badge numbers of responding officers may help as well.
  6. Inform the insurance company: Kentucky is a “no-fault” insurance state, meaning that a driver’s insurance will cover the costs of minor damages and injury. To collect, drivers must inform the insurance company of the accident and all relevant details.

Review the case with an attorney

People with over $1,000 in medical bills from a car accident may seek damages for the other driver’s negligence. Those that believe they may have a case can reach out to a local lawyer familiar with car accident laws in Kentucky.