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Steps to Take After a Rear-End Car Accident in Phoenix

Steps to Take After a Rear-End Car Accident in Phoenix

Shapiro Law Team April 3, 2023 Car Accidents

According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, rear-end crashes are the most common type of car accident statewide. Knowing what steps to take before you get into a motor vehicle crash is key to keeping all your bases covered. It will save you time and money in the long run.

Curious about how to respond when you’re involved in a rear-end collision and how to prevent them from occurring in the first place? Keep reading to learn more.

The Essential Steps to Take Following a Rear-End Collision in Phoenix

Assessing the Situation After a Rear-End Car Accident

  1. Checking for Injuries
    Take a moment to catch your breath and compose yourself, then check for any injuries. Once you know you’re okay, check on other drivers involved in the collision to see if anyone needs immediate medical attention.
  2. Move Vehicles to a Safe Location
    The next thing you should do is get your vehicle away from oncoming traffic to avoid further collisions. Assuming your vehicle isn’t severely damaged and no involved parties need immediate medical attention, move your vehicle to the side of the road or into a nearby parking lot. If you pull onto the shoulder, turn on your hazards and set out reflective emergency triangles to alert other drivers.
  3. Call the Police and/or Emergency Services
    If anyone needs immediate medical attention, call for emergency assistance. Next, contact 911. While police officers will respond to major collisions, they may not respond to minor collisions.

If the police arrive at the scene, they will ask for an accident report. Note the officer’s name, badge number, and contact information, and request a copy of the report when it has been completed. If the police don’t respond to the accident, report the accident online. Request a copy of the accident report either from the local law enforcement office or the insurance adjuster for future reference.

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Gathering Evidence at the Scene

1. Take Photos and Videos of the Scene
Capture plenty of photos and videos of the accident to have as evidence during the insurance claims process and any future litigation. Be as thorough as possible so you don’t miss anything. Note other details like what street the crash occurred on and in what direction each vehicle was traveling. These details will help determine fault and calculate repair costs.

2. Get Contact and Insurance Information From Other Driver(s)
Here are the details you should gather from all parties involved in a rear-end vehicle accident:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Driver’s license number
  • Insurance policy number
  • Insurance company phone number
  • Car make, model, year, color, vehicle identification number (VIN), and license plate number

3. Speak to Witnesses and Get Their Contact Information
Gather eyewitness statements from anyone who witnessed the accident and is willing to help. Note their name and contact information in case they need to be contacted again later.

Collect as many eyewitness statements as you can after the collision occurs. Take note of their names and contact information in case your insurance provider or car accident attorney needs to contact them later.

Seek Medical Attention and Report the Accident

  1. Get a Medical Evaluation
    Whether or not you feel fine immediately after a rear-end accident, seek medical attention. Pain and injuries suffered in a rear-end car collision can present themselves hours, days, or even weeks after the accident. You may also suffer from internal injuries that only a medical professional can detect. If you wait too late after the crash to report proof of injury, another party could negate that the crash was the initial cause.
    If you do sustain accident-related injuries, seek routine medical treatment while recovering to ensure proper healing. Save all medical records for the insurance claims process and any potential court proceedings.
  2. Report the Accident to Your Insurance Provider and the Local DMV
    Contact your insurance provider about the accident to initiate the claims process. You should also report the rear-end accident to the local DMV to avoid facing legal penalties, fines, and possible jail time for failing to do so.
  3. Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
    If you sustain any accident-related injuries, consider contacting a personal injury attorney to advocate on your behalf for financial compensation. This legal professional will guide you through the litigation process and represent you in court.

Dealing With Insurance Companies & Legal Issues

  1. Understanding Arizona’s Comparative Negligence Law
    Typically, the negligent driver of a rear-end collision pays for any damages and injuries incurred. However, Arizona has a comparative negligence law that states, “if the jury finds the plaintiff at fault, they’re not barred from recovery. Instead, the plaintiff’s damages will be reduced by the proportionate degree of their fault.”
    In other words, if both parties are found to be at fault for an accident, the injured party can still receive compensation. The compensation is simply reduced relative to how much they’re at fault for causing the crash.
  2. Cooperate With Your Insurance Adjuster
    Once you begin the claims process, an insurance adjuster will contact you to gather more details about the accident and estimate the claims payment. Be mindful of sharing the facts without providing unnecessary details. If you need help negotiating with your insurance company or filing a lawsuit, contact a car accident attorney for professional assistance.


Preventing Rear-End Car Accidents in Phoenix

Wondering how rear-end collisions occur in Phoenix? An estimated 25% of Arizona rear-end accidents in 2021 were caused by distracted driving. Although rear-end accidents are the most common type of motor vehicle crashes statewide, they’re highly preventable.

Check out our top ten tips for safe driving and avoiding these accidents altogether:

  • Pay attention to your surroundings at all times
  • Don’t use electronic devices while driving
  • Don’t drive while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, and certain prescription medications
  • Practice defensive driving
  • Don’t drive over the speed limit
  • Slow down when driving in hazardous conditions or heavy traffic
  • Be courteous to other drivers
  • Maintain a safe following distance
  • Use your signal when turning or changing lanes
  • Stop at all stop signs and red lights

Scottsdale’s Leading Car Accident Attorney

Car accidents are a leading cause of unintentional injury and death in Arizona. Seeking legal advice from Shapiro Law Team is the best way to ensure you know your rights and receive maximum financial compensation for any damages and injuries incurred. From the initial consultation to court proceedings, our team is committed to providing Superior Representation to every car accident victim in Phoenix, Scottsdale and surrounding areas. Contact us today to speak with a skilled lawyer.

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