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How Can I Prepare for a Car Accident?

Insurance that offers roadside assistance can help you be prepared for a car accident.
Avoiding distractions, like smoking cigarettes, can help prevent accidents.
Wearing a seatbelt is a safety measure that can prepare someone for a car accident.
Knowing what to do after a car accident can help you remain calm when an accident occurs.
Children should always be seated in the back seat of a vehicle as inflated airbags in the front seat can cause severe injuries.
Article Details
  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 29 November 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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There is no one way to prepare for a car accident. The very nature of an accident implies that you will be surprised by it. The single best way to prepare for a care accident is to make sure you are not the cause of one. This means driving safely, staying alert, observing the rules of the road, as well as common courtesy, never driving when intoxicated, and keeping distractions like cellphones or cigarette smoking to a minimum. Additionally, accidents occur when parents are attempting to discipline kids in the back seat. Instead of attempting this, pull over to settle your children’s problems.

In addition to being a good defensive driver, one can prepare for an accident by driving in a vehicle that is safe. Newer cars with good crash test ratings are preferable to cars with low safety ratings. If you are in an accident, your risk of injury will be reduced in a safer car. As well, always wear a seatbelt, and be certain that any child safety seats are properly secured. Roughly half of child and infant seats are improperly secured. Most fire and police departments will gladly show you how to ensure the proper fit of your child’s seat in the car, so that the child is at the least risk for injury.

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Safety concerns have led to the invention of passenger air bags. Some of the newest ones, side curtain airbags, are safe for children in the back seat. However, conventional front seat air bags are not safe for children 12 and under, and those who are less than five feet (1.52 m) tall. To properly prepare for a care accident, be certain that no children under age or height restrictions are seated in the front seats. Airbags can actually cause more injury to young children, and in a front collision, the danger is significant.

You can also prepare for a car accident by carrying the proper auto insurance. Though most states in the US require you carry liability of $50,000 US Dollars (USD), this will probably not cover injuries or pain and suffering if you are responsible for the accident. Also, if your car is damaged beyond repair and you do not carry comprehensive auto insurance, you will be responsible for the cost of replacing your car.

If you have a lease or auto loan, most banks will request you carry comprehensive insurance, and even if you own your car outright, comprehensive insurance will give you better coverage should you be in an accident. If you have a number of assets, you may also want to prepare by carrying personal umbrella insurance. This type of insurance takes over where your auto insurance leaves off, protecting your assets.

Insurance that gives you roadside assistance can additionally help you prepare for a car accident. As well, many companies offer uninsured driver insurance, which will cover repairs to your car if a driver without insurance hits you. These steps will help you be ready financially.

It is not recommended that you use your cellphone while driving. However, having a cellphone available helps you prepare for a car accident if you need to contact authorities. As well, you should always carry your driver’s license, insurance cards, and vehicle registration. If you are planning a drive through remote areas, you can bring along a first aid kit, and some essentials like water and simple food. A minor car accident in a remote place might mean waiting a while for authorities to come. Being stranded without food and water could be very dangerous.

While you can’t really prepare for a car accident or predict one, you can help offset the physical and financial results. You can also supply yourself with a few things you might need if you have to wait at the scene. By being a good driver, you are less likely to cause an accident yourself, which reduces your chances of having one.

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Rotergirl
Post 1

I so agree that prevention is the best preparation. Wear your seatbelt, have good insurance and don't drive like you're immortal.

I've been in two serious accidents, as a passenger both times. In the first one, the driver rounded a curve going a little fast, but also had problems with the wheel bearings. She lost control and we went off the road, nose down into a ditch, rolled over and came to rest on all four wheels. I didn't have my seatbelt on (19 and dumb), whacked the windshield with my head and ended up in the cornfield on my backside. I was ejected through the back window.

Six months later, I was riding to class. It was raining and the roads were a little slick. The driver was tailgating an old truck. I told her to back off, but was sharply reprimanded and told I wasn't driving. The truck braked for something, the driver didn't have enough time to slow down (because she was tailgating), and hit the brakes too hard, throwing her into a skid into the other lane of traffic, where we were T-boned. Thank the Lord the Bronco hit the front quarter panel instead of the door (on my side), or I'd have been a goner. The first accident was a freak thing. The second one could have been prevented if the driver hadn't been tailgating and too stubborn to admit it or drop back.

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