After making sure everyone is safe and in no immediate danger, there are five steps you must take in the unfortunate event of a car accident in South Africa.
These steps will protect you legally and support your case if you claim from the Road Accident Fund (RAF).
Steps to take after a car accident
If you’re involved in a car accident on a South African road there are steps you’re required to take by law.
Failure to remain at an accident scene until the police arrive can result in a hefty fine or even jail time.
Some of these steps will act in your favour if you decide to claim compensation from the RAF.
1. Report the accident to the police
If anyone has been injured, immediately report the accident to the police. Until the police arrive, don’t leave the scene or move anything at the scene unless someone’s life is in danger.
In the case of a minor incident in which nobody is injured, you can report the accident to the nearest police station within 24 hours.
Once the police have taken statements and written a report, ask for a copy of the report for your records.
2. Collect information at the accident scene
As long as it’s safe to do so, collect as much information at the accident scene as possible.
Get the details of the other drivers and vehicles that were involved, as well as the contact details and statements of any witnesses.
Take note of other factors such as the weather, the road names and any other people on the scene such as paramedics or tow-truck drivers.
3. Take photographs
Take as many photographs of the accident scene as possible so investigators or the court can see every angle.
Include photos of any injuries, close-ups of the damage to your vehicle and multiple angles, so they can see every vehicle that was involved and where they are in relation to each other.
4. Get medical treatment without delay
If you’re injured in any way, get immediate medical treatment. Even if it’s a small or superficial injury, you’ll need a medical record of the treatment to include in a claim.
Make sure the medical facility draws up a detailed medical report and request a copy for your records.
5. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney
If you decide to claim from the Road Accident Fund, which everyone involved in a road accident on South African roads is entitled to do, contact an experienced personal injury attorney.
An attorney who has experience dealing with the RAF will ensure you get the correct compensation. Direct claims are possible, but they often result in under-compensation and rejected claims.
Why choose DSC Attorneys?
At DSC Attorneys, we specialise in claims against the Road Accident Fund. A few of our attorneys have served as panel attorneys for the Road Accident Fund, giving them a unique perspective of the claims process.
Our team will help you collect evidence to support your claim, so it’s more likely you will win your case and get the maximum compensation.
Our personal injury attorneys and medico-legal team are committed to helping road accident victims in our country get the compensation they deserve, in as short a period as possible. We work on a no win, no fee basis.