Should I Call The Police for a Fender Bender?
Some car accidents can be catastrophic, while others might not immediately seem so serious. A fender bender might seem like an inconvenience at first, and you and the driver might decide to skip calling the police due to the minor damage. However, once you exchange information and proceed with your day, you might begin to feel pain or other symptoms of an injury hours or days later.
Fender benders might seem minor, but they can result in costly losses. One of the best ways to protect yourself when someone else causes a fender bender is to call the police from the scene, seek the medical treatment you need, and then contact a South Carolina car accident lawyer for a no-cost consultation.
Fender Benders Can Still Cause Serious Injuries
Despite their name, fender benders can result in significant injuries. These seemingly minor accidents, often at low speeds, can lead to unexpected physical harm. Whiplash, a common injury in rear-end collisions, occurs when the head is jerked forward and then snapped back suddenly. It can lead to neck pain, stiffness, and headaches. Soft tissue injuries, such as strains and sprains, can also arise due to the sudden jolt of impact.
Bruising and contusions can occur from contact with seatbelts, steering wheels, or other parts of the vehicle. Back injuries, like herniated discs, can be sustained, and chest injuries such as contusions or rib fractures can result from contact with the dashboard or steering wheel.
Furthermore, airbag-related injuries like burns, abrasions, or fractures can occur upon deployment. Seat belts, while crucial for safety, can cause chest or abdominal contusions in a crash. Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction, leading to jaw pain and difficulties in chewing, can also arise.
Benefits of Calling the Police for a Fender Bender
South Carolina law requires you to report any vehicle accident that results in injuries or death. If anyone has an injury from a fender bender - or develops symptoms in the coming days - you must report the incident to comply with the law. Calling the police from the scene will avoid having to file a report later.
Further, if you call the police right after the fender bender, officers can assess the accident scene and determine whether a driver violated the law. For example, if another driver hit you because they were intoxicated, the officers can identify this criminal violation and arrest the driver. A citation or arrest for criminal charges can significantly help you prove liability of the other driver for your injuries. Even if there is no arrest or citation, a report can give the officer’s opinion on who was at fault, which can be persuasive in an auto insurance claim.
Seek Legal Assistance from a South Carolina Car Accident Lawyer
After a fender bender, you might not be immediately aware of the injuries, damages, and necessary insurance claims. Err on the safe side and call the police, and then seek legal guidance. The Law Office of D. Craig Brown, LLC, can assess your rights, so please contact us for a free case evaluation.