No one plans to be in a vehicle collision, but being prepared can help keep you safe when the unexpected occurs. When a crash happens, you can work with a car accident attorney, to get financial compensation for your injuries.

Keeping essential equipment in your vehicle can facilitate a smoother claims process after a crash. From first aid kits to road markers, these tools can be invaluable to protect your well-being and legal rights after a collision on South Carolina’s roads.

  • First Aid Kit

While you should always seek immediate medical assistance after a car accident to support your insurance claim, a first aid kit can relieve minor injuries like cuts or burns. A standard kit should contain antiseptics, band-aids, adhesive tape, gauze, scissors, pain relievers, and a first-aid guide.

Knowing how to use the items in your first aid kit is essential; consider taking a first aid course with your local Red Cross to learn how to administer first aid to yourself and others.

  • Water

Keeping water in your car isn’t just about staying hydrated on long trips; it’s a crucial emergency provision. In the event of an accident on the state’s backroads, you may be stranded and waiting for help.

Water can prevent dehydration, which can exacerbate stress and impair decision-making. It can also clean wounds and cool down an overheated engine. Keep around one gallon of water per person in your car for emergencies.

  • Flashlight

Invest in an LED flashlight with multiple settings, including a strobe feature to signal for help. It’ll allow you to navigate in the dark, inspect your vehicle for damage, and make yourself visible to rescuers.

A flashlight can help you locate essential items like your first aid kit or car manual. A reliable light source can also offer a sense of security during a stressful situation.

Always keep a spare set of batteries with your flashlight or purchase a model with a car charger or USB that connects to a power bank. This ensures your flashlight is always charged and ready for use.

  • Emergency Tools

Having the right emergency tools in your car can be a lifesaver in an accident. A tactical knife with built-in seat belt cutter and glass breaker features is an all-in-one tool for quick escapes. It allows you to cut through jammed seat belts and break windows if the doors are stuck, ensuring you can exit easily from your vehicle.

A portable charger can keep your phone powered so you can call for emergency help. This also ensures your phone is available to take photos or video of the accident scene, including damage to your vehicle, injuries you sustained, and witness statements.

  • Jumper Cables

Jumper cables are invaluable in post-accident situations, too. An accident can jostle your vehicle’s electrical system, causing the battery to drain or fail. Having jumper cables enables you to restart your engine with the help of a passing motorist, moving you out of potentially dangerous locations like bridges, tunnels, freeways, and busy intersections.

  • Essential Documents

In the aftermath of a car accident, having essential documents readily accessible can simplify interactions with law enforcement and other parties involved. Your driver’s license not only serves as your primary form of identification, but it also proves you are authorized to drive. The vehicle’s registration confirms that you legally own the car, and your insurance details enable quicker claims and potential hospital transfers.

Keeping these essential documents in a secure yet accessible spot in your car, like the glove compartment, can expedite processes and reduce stress during a challenging time. Consider placing your insurance and registration inside a baggie, making them easier to grab quickly and protecting them from debris from the accident, such as airbag deployment residue.

  • Flares or Road Markers

Having flares or road markers in your car is crucial for increasing visibility in the event of an accident. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reported on a study that found an estimated 566 people were killed and 14,371 injured annually between 2016 and 2018 in roadside crashes with a disabled vehicle. Low visibility was cited as a likely cause of these accidents.

Flares and illuminated or reflective road markers can alert other drivers to your presence, reducing the risk of additional collisions. They’re beneficial at night or in low-visibility conditions like fog or heavy rain, making locating you easier for emergency services.

Protect Yourself After a Car Accident with Help from Joye Law Firm

Preparing for the unexpected by equipping your car with essentials like a first aid kit, water, and emergency tools is your best defense for protecting your safety in a car accident.

If you are injured in a car accident in South Carolina, contact Joye Law Firm for a free consultation. Our experienced car accident lawyers can help you navigate the complexities of your case and help get you the compensation you deserve.

About the Author

Mark Joye is the Head of the Litigation Department at the Joye Law Firm. A Board-Certified Trial Advocate with nearly 30 years of litigation experience, he currently serves on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice and is a past president of the South Carolina Association for Justice. In a recent trial, Joye headed a trial team that secured $17 million for a family killed in a tractor-trailer accident.

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