The moments following an auto collision will always be a blur. Even if it’s a minor fender-bender, it’s likely that you’ll feel jarred and confused as the adrenaline starts pumping through your veins. Don’t feel like you’re any less of a person because of this: It’s a sign that you’re alive, and you should be thankful. Many don’t get to make that claim after a vehicle collision.

In spite of all these jittery feelings, however, it’s time to get focused and complete the following tasks:

Any injuries?

Check to make sure you’re not seriously injured and no one in your car is seriously injured. If possible, leave your car exactly where it is. If your car poses a threat to others and it’s drivable, move it to a safe place as far off the road as you can get it. Check to see if anyone else involved in the crash is seriously injured as well and tend to them as needed.

Do not get out of your car unless it’s safe

Remember that your brain is rattled and you’re not thinking clearly, so be extremely careful when you exit your vehicle. Many people have died after getting out of their cars and stepping into traffic immediately after a collision.

Call 911

Regardless of whether there are injuries or not — and even if it’s a seemingly minor accident — you should play it safe and call 911. The 911 operator will dispatch emergency responders and an ambulance if needed.

Take photographs

If you’re able, take photographs of the accident scene and any injuries. These photographs will help you if a lawsuit results from the collision.

Trade information

Get the contact information, license plate numbers, phone numbers, email addresses, insurance information and names of all witnesses and people involved in the crash.

Don’t admit to fault

You should not admit to causing the accident and you should not say you’re sorry. Simply be polite and truthful while recognizing that it requires a legal expert to fully evaluate fault.

Finally, you may want to contact a Maryland car accident lawyer who can help you evaluate whether you have a viable claim for damages relating to your injuries and damages.