What To Do After a Car Accident in Arkansas
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Best practice guide for what you need to do in case you are in an auto accident in AR
FIRST AND FOREMOST
As a responsible driver, you must never leave the scene of an accident. Not only is it essential that you provide any necessary help immediately following an accident, but leaving an accident scene can result in having your driving privileges revoked or your license suspended.
After stopping your vehicle, you should pull up as close to the accident as safely possible, without obstructing traffic. Take a moment to assess the situation, and do not panic. Be aware of the traffic situation, and any other potential dangers, such as fire.
You should do your best to provide immediate assistance to other motorists, passengers or pedestrians that may have been injured in the accident. Take extra care when attempting to move an injured person; if possible, wait for an ambulance to arrive. Notify 911 to report any injuries and call for medical assistance. If the accident did not result in any injuries, inform the local Arkansas police, sheriff or nearest law enforcement agency.
If you have been injured in a car accident, it is important to stay calm. If possible, ensure that you are out of danger and not blocking any oncoming traffic. Call or wait for help, and do not attempt to move if you are unable to do so. See Auto Accident Injuries for more information.
If you are involved in an accident in Arkansas, you are required to provide certain information to the other parties involved. Likewise, fellow motorists, passengers or pedestrians involved in the accident must share similar information with you. Also, it is often wise to ask for the information of witnesses to the accident just in case you need to have them testify at a later date. The key information to exchange in the aftermath of an accident includes:
- Name, address and contact details
- Driver license number
- License plate number of the vehicles involved
- Auto insurance information for the motorists involved
If you hit an unattended vehicle, you must make an effort to find the owner or driver, and follow these same procedures. If you are unable to locate the owner of an unattended vehicle, you are required to leave a note indicating your name and contact information, and a brief description of the accident.
REPORTING AN ACCIDENT TO THE ARKANSAS DFA
- In some situations, you must report an accident to the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration. You are required to complete and submit a Motor Vehicle Accident Report within 30 days from the occurrence of the accident, if any of the following apply:
- The accident resulted in death or injury.
- Damage to property as a result of the accident exceeds $1000.
- If you fail to report an accident to the Arkansas DFA, you may have your license suspended. In the event that another driver offers to pay for damages and asks you not to report an accident, you are still required to file the report in any of the situations outlined above. You are also required to report an accident even if it occurred through no fault of your own.
- You will be required to show adequate proof of financial responsibility. Your report must include detailed and current information regarding your insurance coverage. You can even get your insurance company to fill out the relevant part of the form for you to simplify the process. You can fill out the Accident Report form online, or submit a completed form by mailing it to the following address:
Safety Responsibility Section P.O. Box 1272, Rm. 1120 Little Rock, AR 72203
If you have any questions or difficulty in obtaining the form you can call the Safety Responsibility department on (501) 682-7098.
- Notify your auto insurance company if you are involved in an accident.
- See also Auto Accident Injuries.
- In the event that you are injured in an auto accident, consider contacting a personal injury attorney. Retain copies of any medical expenses incurred as a result of an accident.
- See also Driving Record and Driving School.