The first and most important piece of advice is: if you are involved in a traffic accident, stay calm. The NRA is proud of the fact it's lawful for people to carry guns in their vehicles in the majority if US states. No matter how shocked and angry you are, do not automatically reach for your gun. Wait cautiously for a minute. If there is no gunfire from the other vehicles involved, it should be safe to leave your own vehicle. Now is the time to put your careful preparations into operation. Check everyone is OK. If anyone is even slightly injured, call an ambulance. Without treatment, many minor injuries grow more serious. Now exchange information with the other driver. You want their name, address, contact details, insurance company and its telephone number. Remember, everyone is supposed to carry proof of insurance when driving. The information you need is on that card. You should carry a preprinted card with all your information to speed this process.
Now comes the important part. We all forget the detail of what happened. Worse, because we prefer to remember ourselves in the right, we tend to forget any details that might show us in the wrong. So record as much as possible. If you have a camera in your handphone, take pictures of the scene, of the damage to the vehicles, of any obvious injuries, and of any other feature that might show how and why the accident happened, e.g. a stop sign that has fallen at a junction, broken glass on the road causing a tire blow-out, etc. If you do not have a camera, take detailed notes, draw a plan of the scene showing where the vehicles started off and where they ended up, and sketch an outline of the vehicles and mark where there is obvious damage. Should there be witnesses, get their names and contact details. Should it come to a dispute about who was at fault, this could be vital evidence in your favor from an independent source. If an ambulance or police officers attend the scene, take their names. Once you have collected all the information, always file a report at a convenient police department, sheriff's office, etc. In many US states, this is a legal requirement. It's often a precondition of being able to claim from your insurer.
Report to your insurer as soon as possible and file a claim. A claims adjuster will contact you to review the facts, discuss who was at fault and decide where to have your vehicle repaired. If there are questions about medical treatment and its cost, this will also be agreed. Never agree to a quick settlement unless you are absolutely sure there are no claims likely to come for personal injuries and losses flowing from those injuries. If you follow these simple steps, the hopes you had when you received those car insurance quotes, will be turned into reality as the insurer pays up quickly and without hassle. If you cannot reach agreement with your insurer, say because there's a dispute over the value of your vehicle, remember your state's Department of Insurance operates a complaints process to resolve all these problems. Before acting on car insurance quotes, always check the records of complaints published by the local Department. It can save you pain when making a claim.