In an Accident, Do not Leave the Scene Without These Things
Updated: Feb 25
On Long Island, the police will usually be the first to arrive when you report a motor vehicle accident. However, in New York City, the police will not come unless you specifically state that you need medical attention. In either case, if you are not seriously injured and are able to get out of your vehicle, there are some important steps and information you need to do and collect.
The first thing is to call the police. Even if they cannot, will not or do not come, you will have a record that you made the call.
Second, take photographs of the accident site and the cars involved. Check your surroundings – was there debris in the road, a traffic sign that was ignored, pavement markings that show skid marks or painted lines? Take pictures of all the cars involved and any damage sustained or that was previously on the vehicle. Make sure you get all angles so no one can claim any damage after-the-fact.
Third, take pictures of, or collect, the license and insurance information of all the drivers involved. You should do this even if you have called the police. Police reports can have mistakes, and in some cases, you may be involved in an accident where the other party or parties do not want to call the police.
Finally, look for witnesses and if you are safely able to so and ask them for their account of what happened. If possible, have the witness stay until the police arrive so their information will be on the police report. At a minimum, get their name and phone number. If the collision involves a question of lights, this is crucial.
Remember, if you are in an accident and injured, call us immediately. All the information you collect will help us with your case and to a swifter recovery process for you.