How to Avoid Quarrels After a Road Accident

Road accidents and their resulting quarrels happen quite often. Quarrels and harsh words may release your anxiety and fear after the event but they create tension for everyone present, including yourself. Moreover, quarreling spoils your dignity and dents your self-esteem. By keeping your cool, you can ensure that you get the details needed, quell the potential for quarrels and come out of the accident with your dignity intact.


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    Stay calm. After you suffer a minor accident that has not injured you, but has dented your vehicle, stay calm. Things can, and will be, fixed. Staying calm will ground your thinking processes, helping you to stay firmly focused rather than being scared and over-reactive.
    • Take three deep and long breaths. Close your eyes for a minute, then return to reality.
    • Take a moment or two to compose yourself if you feel that you're about to lose your temper.
    • Remind yourself often that things are going to be okay. This too shall pass.
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    Understand the situation. Seek to understand the situation quickly, as best you can. An accident has occurred, and regardless of fault, it needs to be attended to with politeness, speed and care. Details need to be exchanged with a clear head.
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    Do not acknowledge or discuss blame. This is not the time to be arguing about who caused what. Moreover, if you're in a jurisdiction that is highly litigious, anything that you say about accepting or denying blame may end up being problematic if legal proceedings occur later. Instead, focus on some of the following constructive approaches:
    • Check yourself and passengers for injury.
    • Ask the other persons involved if they are okay.
    • Make calls for an ambulance if needed. Otherwise, call the police for assistance.
    • See whether it's possible to move the cars out of the way of traffic. If so, then do this.
    • Keep talking calmly, focusing on positive action to ensure everyone's continued safety.
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    Respond to aggression or fear from other parties with calm. Acknowledge their fear and worry but keep reiterating that it is important to ensure everyone's safety and to exchange details for repairs and insurance purposes.
    • Do your best not to react to any spiteful or angry comments. Respond with comments such as "I can see that you're upset and I understand how frightening this is. Let's do what we can together to fix things as quickly as possible."


  • Be kind at all times. Realize that the other side is experiencing the same tumult of emotions that you are, ranging from fear and anger to worrying about the cost and damage to the car.
  • Take notes if possible. The act of note taking can help you to stay calm, and it can be a useful source of information later on. Note the time, the location, names of involved parties, contact details, damage as you observe it and anything else of relevance.


  • Concentrate on staying safe. Get everyone out of the way of oncoming traffic.
  • Do not lose your temper. Showing attitude is even worse! Even though it may feel better initially, it shows that you aren't very willing to discuss things calmly and makes it much harder to resolve the basic issues.

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Categories: Defensive Driving Skills & Safety