Documenting a car crash is an essential step for both parties to take as it can help the police write up their incident report, help determine legal liability and smooth the way for any insurance claims. Residents of Texas should keep the following things in mind.

First, it is important to remain as calm as possible after an accident. This will allow victims to remember the vital details. Next, victims should call 911 if anyone is in need of immediate medical treatment. If the vehicles are not blocking traffic or posing a danger in some other way, the crash scene should be left as is.

Victims should jot down what they remember of the crash and what personal belongings are missing or damaged: electronics, glasses, items in one’s purse or wallet, etc. They can also take note of physical injuries. Even a slight ache can turn into a serious condition later on. Next, it is advisable to take photographs of the vehicles, skid marks, visible injuries and damage to objects like trees and light poles.

Witnesses should have their name and number taken down and their testimonies recorded. Victims must take a neutral stance and not argue when aspects of the testimony disagree. Lastly, victims should cooperate fully with the police but refrain from signing anything until they know what it involves.

If there is a car crash and the other driver is at fault, victims can file a third-party insurance claim. This might cover damages not covered by the claim with one’s own insurance company, such as medical expenses and lost wages. Victims may want to schedule a case evaluation with a lawyer before proceeding with a claim. A lawyer may be able to negotiate for a settlement, leaving litigation as a last resort.