Anytime you are in an automobile accident, your safety is the most important consideration.
Do your best to remain calm. If the accident is minor, look for a safe area away from traffic. If you notice anyone injured, then call 9-1-1 immediately.
Next, report the accident. For a collision accident on a public roadway the police should be called. The benefit of contacting the police is that there is official documentation. The benefit leans in favor of the not at fault driver, as there is notation to support their claim. The negative consequences of notifying the police are the time it takes for the police to arrive on the scene and the at fault driver is very likely to receive a ticket.
Additionally, contact your insurance company or agent to report the situation and make plans for any needed help. It may be helpful if you can take photos of the incident with your smartphone. Keep notes of what happened and exchange information with those involved (name, address, insurance carrier, and phone number of the other driver and any witnesses). If a police report is filed, this information will be collected as part of the report.
If you are the party at fault in the accident, remain at the scene and accept responsibility. Leaving the scene without contacting the police is considered a hit-and-run situation, which is illegal.
When speaking with others it is recommended not to give personal information to those other than the other driver, police, or medical personnel. Avoid discussing fault when speaking with the other driver.
Do not provide information to anyone showing up at your home or calling you, unless you can verify their identity. If you are contacted at the scene or at the hospital by someone unfamiliar to you asking about potential injuries, contact your insurance agent immediately.
The State of Michigan provides a consumer guide for details of auto insurance. http://tinyurl.com/MichNoFault.
Contact our office to review your insurance questions or learn more about the many benefits of AAA membership.