What to Do if You Witness a Car Accident


Obviously, getting involved in a car accident can be a life-changing event, but witnessing one happening could also be monumental. Essentially, you are looking to be as cool, calm and collected as you possibly can, while ensuring safety as much as possible for all parties involved. Of course, a lot of this depends on the severity of the crash and the extent of the injuries, but this guide is here to give you a general overview of some standard responses that you should make.

Ensure Your Safety

The last thing that you want to happen is for you to get caught up in the incident yourself, so you will want to ensure your own safety as a priority. Make sure you don’t suddenly stop or get too distracted from the road in front of you. Aim to pull over to the side of the road at least 100 feet from the scene and put on your hazard lights. You need to give plenty of distance so your vehicle is not at risk.

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Call the Emergency Services

Too often, people don’t call the emergency services as they assume it has already been done. No matter what the extent of the crash, the authorities need to be notified and it doesn’t do you any harm to speak to them to give all the vital information including the scale of the accident, the location, the number of people involved and any other details that may be of use.

Check on the Victims

The next step is to approach the scene of the accident if it is safe to do so to check the condition of the people that have been involved in the accident. However, you shouldn’t attempt to move injured people who are unable to move themselves unless there is a serious risk of fire. You don’t want to risk making anything worse and you are much better off waiting on the medically trained professionals.

Stabilize the Vehicles    

If the accident does not seem too serious, it is a good idea that all drivers involved in the accident switch off their engines. This will play a major role in reducing the overall risk of fire. If it is safe to do so, you can then attempt to move care out of the way if they are in a dangerous area to make it easier for the emergency services to access the scene.

Give a Statement and Provide Details

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You will be required to provide all relevant facts to the police, as well as your contact information. The drivers involved will need to contact their insurers and maybe even get some legal representation like a local DUI lawyer. You may end up being contacted by various parties to verify some facts about the situation.

Hopefully, after reading through this short guide, you have a better idea of the steps that you need to take if you are involved in witnessing a car accident at any time.


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About Sean Mackay

Sean writes about cars, golf and events going on in British Columbia, Canada. He is also the editor for The Automotive Review - an automotive publication bringing a West Coast flavour to its editorials.
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