There is nothing worse than being stuck in traffic because of a collision ahead unless you happen to be involved in the said accident. Brooklyn experiences traffic congestion virtually every day, from excruciatingly slow lights in Dumbo to bumper-to-bumper traffic on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. There seems to be no end in sight when it comes to slow moving in New York City’s largest borough. If you’ve been involved in an accident in the middle of traffic, stay calm and follow these tips to best help you avoid trouble.
Paramount to everything else, check for injuries and your well-being first. Call 9-1-1 for all emergencies. No matter how congested or inaccessible your location may seem, an ambulance will arrive sooner or later. In the State of New York, it is illegal to depart from the scene of an accident before exchanging contact info. So, unless circumstances demand otherwise, stay at the scene, and get the following information:
- Full name
- Driver’s license number
- Phone number
- Home or commercial address
- Vehicle license plate
- Make, model, and year of vehicle
- Owner of vehicle, if not the driver
- Name of driver’s insurance company and policy number
Amidst the chaos after an accident, it may not always be easy to obtain the necessary information. Furthermore, the other driver may be hesitant to cooperate. This is why it’s important to have the police show up at the accident scene. The other driver may refuse to speak with you, but they are legally obligated to provide information for a police report. Additionally, if possible, speak with witnesses who saw the accident and ask for their contact information.
In a later car accident case, they may be able to provide testimony. Next, determine how to best remove yourself from the center of traffic. Drive your car to the side, or if it is too dangerous to drive the vehicle, go to a secure place near the accident scene on foot. Only do this if you are physically well enough. Your injuries may be serious so attempting to push or drive a damaged vehicle could expose you and your passengers to further injuries, more so on a busy roadway. If deemed safe, use your phone or personal camera to document the accident scene. If you are physically limited to do so, have a witness or someone else take photos. When taking a snapshot, find any visible damage to your car, the position of your vehicle, buildings, and any potential obstacles. If you notice debris from the crash, make sure to capture it on camera as well. What may seem insignificant at the time may prove crucial when collecting evidence for your potential Brooklyn car accident legal case.
Remember, your health and quite possibly your life are at stake after a collision. Do not let your surroundings, such as the depth of traffic or angry drivers, determine your next steps. Stay calm, collected, and vigilant when dealing with the most unfortunate of situations. Your actions in those crucial minutes are vital for yourself and any involved passengers.