An automobile accident is a traumatic experience for anyone involved. It is an especially unsettling life event for teens and their parents who are just starting to drive. Once the dust has settled and you’ve determined that everyone is alright, it’s time to begin the process of getting back on the road safely. As a parent, you must have the proper tools to know how to help your teen handle an auto accident, as it’s the next step in developing proficient, confident drivers. The first step you should take to help your teen is to contact lawyers from reputed law firms such as Rawlins Law, APC to know their rights and protect them.
Handling a Teen Car Accident
If your child is in a car accident, determine first if anyone has been injured. Injuries should be reported to the authorities by calling 911 immediately and reporting your location.
Once injuries have been dealt with, it’s time to get to safety. If vehicles are driveable, they should be pulled as far off the road as they can safely move. Have your teen turn on hazard lights and stay outside the vehicle unless it is determined unsafe with surrounding traffic conditions. If a vehicle is not safe to drive, secure a tow truck or emergency roadside assistance to bring the car to the nearest repair shop for assessment.
Despite how minor a fender bender might seem to your teen, it’s important to stress the importance of reporting the accident to the police. Even minor accidents require you to file a police report, and your guidance may be needed to help them through this process.
Filing an Insurance Claim
Filing an insurance claim is the next step in navigating a traffic accident. Involve your teen in calling the insurance agency and providing details and information that will help your claim be processed more efficiently. Making sure that your child can recall and communicate key details to both law enforcement officials and insurance professionals will give them a real-life experience that, hopefully, they won’t have to draw on again for quite a while. In addition, you need to educate them on how insurance companies will try to lowball the victims of auto accidents and what they can do about it. Advise them to get an auto accident lawyer as soon as possible in case of an accident.
Avoid These Auto Accident Snags
As tempting as it may be to leave the scene of an accident, communicate to your child that it is NEVER acceptable to leave without some attempt to report the incident to the proper authorities. Doing so could result in fines and penalties that could result in the suspension of a newly acquired license.
Getting into altercations with other drivers is also not advised. In the heat of the moment, dealing with one another when emotions are running high could result in additional injury and altercations that could have legal consequences. Advise your teen to stay as cool and calm as possible while dealing with the details, knowing that investigation of the accident will lead to a resolution for all parties involved.
Back On the Road Again
Depending on how prepared your teen is to drive, you may have to take additional steps to ensure that they are equipped to handle life behind the wheel.
Have them keep insurance cards handy at all times?
- Know who to call in the event of a roadside emergency, and post the information in vehicles that they drive
- Review strategies for safe driving and dealing with emergency situations
- Prioritize a call list for accidents and traffic issues; make sure they know who to call for help
Driving is a big responsibility and privilege, one that should be taken seriously. It’s inevitable that your teen will have driving challenges as they learn to navigate the road, but with your help and some solid strategies for success, they’ll emerge more capable and confident than ever before.