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When you first find yourself dealing with the consequences of a car accident, you may worry you have missed an important step.

In order to prevent further injury or confusion, it is important to know what actions to take directly after a crash.

Stay safe

Many times, it is easy to forget that staying at the scene is crucial for avoiding legal troubles. Hit and run accidents tend to get blamed on those who leave the area first, presumably due to guilt. For legal reasons as well as safety ones, it is important to not leave before authorities arrive there.

Make sure to check your fellow passengers or anyone else affected by the crash for injuries. If there is no response from someone, seek immediate medical help and try to not move the person. You may make their injuries worse if you are not careful.

Talk to other people

After that, wait for authorities to show up at the scene. While doing so, you should exchange phone numbers with anyone who was also in the accident. It is imperative to keep track of this information for insurance purposes later on.

Beyond talking to anyone else involved directly in the crash, it may be helpful to talk to witnesses. Take note of anyone who saw the event firsthand and ask for his or her phone number to call later.

Gather critical information

Other helpful pieces of data to ask include license plate numbers, home addresses, or other basic facts that can help you identify the person later. Take note of what you say out loud. Do not claim it was your fault or apologize, since that could lead to liability issues down the line.