Every year, millions of people visit Myrtle Beach in South Carolina. People gather at the Grand Strand in cars, trucks, bikes, and on foot, whether on vacation or simply going about their life here. Myrtle Beach’s transport system has struggled to keep up, resulting in increased congestion and traffic accidents over the years.
While you can employ defensive driving, you cannot always account for the other motorist who chooses to flout speed limits, operate under the influence, or drive while texting. These irresponsible drivers inflict devastating injuries or even death to innocent individuals, and the desire to hold hazardous lawbreakers accountable motivates us to stand on the side of the innocent.
The personal injury attorneys at David Aylor Law Offices provide these tips to help safeguard your legal rights and discover what to do after a car accident in Myrtle Beach.
Take These Steps Following a Myrtle Beach Car Accident
It is rare to have the mental fortitude to take rational actions following a car crash. Everyone panics and acts or says things they shouldn’t, including victims who had nothing to do with the accident.
However, if you plan ahead of time what you should and should not do in the event of a crash, you will be more likely to perform everything correctly. The essential priority directly following a car crash is yours and your passengers’ safety.
If you can, you should take the following actions:
1. Remain at the scene of the accident
Even if the car collision was minor, you should never leave the scene without reporting it. Leaving the accident scene is a serious infraction that can result in a suspended license, penalties, and even jail time.
Aside from stopping after the accident, ensure you’re in a safe area that keeps everyone safe from potential incidents. This could imply:
- Get off the road and move to the side
- Turning on your hazard lights
- If it’s dark outside, exit your car using a flashlight or your phone’s light.
- Leave your vehicle in its present position if it isn’t working, and move to a safe area away from the road.
2. Exchange motorist details
After a car collision in Myrtle Beach, it’s also a good idea to communicate the following information with the other driver(s) and any passengers involved:
- Telephone numbers
- Number on the license plate
- License information
- Auto insurance details
- Vehicle colors, make, and model
3. Report the the incident to the local police
Once you’ve reached a safe spot and checked on your passengers, call 911. Always report any accidents that result in injury or property damage.
South Carolina law requires you to report any incident that causes car damage of $1,000 or more within 24 hours. You will be in breach of the law and may face legal consequences if you fail to report the car accident.
When speaking with the operator, try to maintain your cool and offer correct yet succinct information about your whereabouts. The dispatcher may direct you to remain on the line until emergency assistance arrives.
4. Take photos
Document the incident thoroughly by capturing your car from all angles, revealing the damage done to both vehicles. It could also be a good idea to record the other vehicle’s license plate.
Photographic evidence may effectively demonstrate damages from a vehicle accident, which benefits your injury claim. If you cannot capture the situation immediately, do so as soon as possible after leaving.
5. Alert your car insurance company
To report the accident, call the number provided by your auto insurance carrier. You could also call your insurance agent, who will do the necessary paperwork and report the accident to your insurance provider on your behalf.
Regardless of who was at fault for the crash, you should contact your vehicle insurance carrier as soon as possible. Your policy may require you to notify your insurance carrier of any occurrence that may trigger coverage as soon as possible. Failure to notify your auto insurance provider on time may risk your coverage.
Remember that reporting the accident to your auto insurance company does not obligate you to make a claim. Discuss the benefits and drawbacks of making a claim with a Myrtle Beach attorney at David Aylor Law Offices, such as if it will affect your car insurance premiums.
6. Keep your conversation with the other driver to a minimum
No matter how you’re feeling or what you believe may have led to the collision, be careful what you are at the scene of the car accident. Do not accept responsibility for the other driver’s actions.
Even if you sincerely feel you are at fault, details may emerge afterward that prove you were wrong. However, if you accept fault at the site of an accident, your statements might be used against you.
Make no commitments to another motorist, especially when it comes to police or insurance companies becoming involved. Anything you say to the other motorist or their insurance company, even if expressed politely or with care, might be used against you later.
7. Keep accurate records
Keep detailed notes of any medical care or vehicle maintenance you require. Even if you don’t intend to file a claim, you may change your mind and need documentation to prove your accident-related losses.
Keep track of your injuries and how they affect your daily life. You should also keep track of whom you speak with and what you discuss. Make a point of not deleting any emails you send regarding the accident.
8. Get the car repaired
Get estimates for having the vehicle repaired straight away, but if you have backup transportation, you may want to wait until you work out an agreement before having the repairs done.
Ensure that you take into account all factors pertaining to the maintenance of your car, such as:
- Mechanical work
- Body work
- Replacement of seatbelts and kid safety seats that were damaged in the collision
When faced with rising medical and repair expenditures, it’s easy to forget some of these, particularly the car seats. However, all of these must be accounted for in your claim as you work to recover damages for the accident and the resulting financial losses.
Consult a Myrtle Beach Car Accident Attorney About Your Right to Compensation
You should not have to deal with medical costs and financial losses due to injuries caused by another driver’s negligence. South Carolina law permits harmed persons to seek restitution for their losses where the carelessness of another caused the injury.
If you have been badly injured in a vehicle accident caused by someone else, you need a car accident lawyer who is familiar with South Carolina law and can aggressively represent your interests. Contact David Aylor Law Offices for the assistance you can rely on throughout the process of pursuing restitution.
Car Accident FAQs
What happens after I file a claim with my insurance provider?
Your insurance provider will contact you for further information about the loss and may want a written or recorded statement from you. If you have medical payments or an uninsured motorist claim, you must submit proof of loss.
What happens if I don’t file a claim?
You should still notify your insurance company about the collision. Why? Because the other motorist may file a claim without your knowledge.
How long does it take to settle a car accident claim?
Some lawsuits are uncomplicated and result in a settlement within months. Sometimes the specifics are more complicated and need much labor behind the scenes.