What to Do When You Get into a Car Accident in the Philippines

If you find yourself in a car accident in the Philippines, then you must remember that your first priority should always be in ensuring everyone’s safety. Check for injuries and provide immediate assistance if needed. It’s also crucial to document the scene by taking photos of the vehicles involved and noting any relevant details like license plates and road conditions. 

However, regardless of the severity of a vehicular accident, getting involved in one can be quite tedious, annoying, and expensive. From trying to amicably settle (in cases of minor accidents) to contacting the authorities (in major ones), and filing insurance claims, vehicular accidents are like your guaranteed one-way ticket to hell, especially if you do not know what to expect or do. It’s best to avoid getting involved in one altogether, but if you aren’t able to, then read on and learn more about what you need to do.

steps to take when you get into a car accident in the philippines

Steps to Take When You Get into a Car Accident in the Philippines

Car accidents refer to unexpected collisions, either with other vehicles, people, or objects on or beside the road.  It usually results in vehicular damage, physical injuries, or even fatalities. They are unfortunate events that can happen to anyone while driving on the road. Knowing what to do in cases of car accidents is crucial because it ensures a proper and swift response to mitigate further risks and address the immediate aftermath effectively. 

Being prepared with the necessary knowledge and steps to take during a car accident can make a significant difference in ensuring everyone’s safety and resolving any resulting issues promptly. It helps individuals involved in such incidents navigate through the complex process of reporting, documenting, and potentially seeking assistance from authorities or insurance providers. By understanding what actions to take, drivers can better protect themselves, their passengers, and other road users during unforeseen events on the road.

Here’s a step-by-step guide based on updated guidelines from the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to help you navigate through such a situation.

Minor Accidents

Minor accidents in the context of vehicular incidents typically involve minor vehicle damage, such as fender-benders or small collisions with stationary objects. Examples include rear-end collisions at low speeds, minor sideswipes, or hitting a parked car in a parking lot. These accidents usually result in minimal physical injuries but may still require documentation and resolution to address vehicle damages and insurance claims efficiently.

Step 1. Ensure Safety First

  • Get out of the vehicle.
  • Check for injuries and make sure everyone involved is safe. 
  • Take photos of the accident scene for documentation.

Step 2. Avoid Blocking Traffic

  • If possible, move your vehicle to the side of the road to prevent traffic congestion.
  • Use hazard lights and if available, use flares or cones to warn other motorists.

Step 3. Exchange Information

  • Obtain the other driver’s name, address, contact details, and insurance information.
  • Try to settle the issue amicably. 
  • If unable to do so, call the MMDA hotline (136 or 882-0860) for assistance.

Step 4. Contact Your Insurance Company:

  • Call your insurance agent immediately while still on–site to report the accident and inquire about the repair process.
  • Stay at the scene until authorities arrive and advise you on further steps.

Major Accidents

Major accidents generally refer to collisions that result in significant vehicular damage, severe injuries, or fatalities. Examples of major accidents include high-speed collisions, multi-vehicle pile-ups, accidents involving pedestrians or cyclists, and collisions resulting from reckless or impaired driving. These types of accidents often require immediate medical attention, extensive documentation, and thorough investigations by authorities to determine liability and ensure appropriate legal actions are taken.

Step 1. Check for Injuries

  • Get out of the vehicle.
  • Prioritize checking yourself and passengers for injuries.
  • Immediately seek medical assistance if needed.

Step 2. Document the Scene

  • Take photos of the accident, including both vehicles and the surrounding area.
  • If possible, move your vehicle to a safe location to prevent further incidents.

Step 3. Cooperate with Authorities

  • If there’s no traffic enforcer in sight, call the MMDA hotline (136 or 882-0860) or the police for assistance.
  • Get the names of the police or investigator in charge.
  • Allow traffic investigators to manage the situation.
  • Exchange necessary information with the other party involved, such as:
    • name
    • address
    • phone number
    • insurance company
    • policy number
    • driver’s license number and 
    • license plate number. 

Step 4. Contact Your Insurance Provider

  • Notify your insurance company about the accident and follow their instructions.
  • Check about the actual cost to repair your car and see if it’s better than making insurance claims.

Step 5. File a Report with the Police

  • File a police report at your local police station for accident documentation purposes and to help speed up the insurance claims procedures.

Remember, staying calm and following these steps can help manage the aftermath of a car accident efficiently. Being prepared and informed can mitigate potential challenges and ensure a smoother resolution. 

Additional Considerations

If you are unsure about any aspect of the vehicular accident you were involved in, be it against another person, vehicle, or thing, then you may want to consider taking additional actions such as:

Getting a Legal Advice (optional)

If you get involved in an accident, you may want to consider consulting with a lawyer for legal advice, especially in complex situations where you may incur legal liabilities. 

Understanding Liability 

The laws and provisions regarding vehicular accidents emphasize the importance of responsible driving and adherence to traffic regulations to ensure road safety for everyone. 

Some of these laws include the following:

Republic Act No. 4136 (Land Transportation and Traffic Code)—Reckless Driving

Under the Republic Act No. 4136 (Land Transportation and Traffic Code) is a rule against reckless driving. This law prohibits operating a vehicle without due caution, considering road conditions, traffic, and hazards. Violating this law not only endangers the driver but also poses risks to pedestrians and nearby properties. In cases of reckless driving leading to accidents, drivers may face legal consequences.

RA 4136—The Speed Limit Law

Furthermore, the Speed Limit Law, outlined in Chapter IV, Article I of the Land Transportation and Traffic Code, sets clear guidelines on driving speeds. Exceeding the speed limit, whether explicitly posted or not, is considered illegal and can contribute to accidents. 

RA 10913 (Anti-Distracted Driving Act) and RA 10586 (Anti-Drunk and Drugged Driving Act of 2013)

Additionally, drunk driving and distracted driving (e.g., using cellphones while driving) are recognized as forms of reckless driving that significantly increase accident risks. 

It’s essential for drivers to understand these laws and provisions to avoid liability in case of accidents and to prioritize safe driving practices on the road. In the event of a vehicular accident, knowing and complying with these regulations can play a crucial role in determining liabilities and ensuring appropriate legal actions are taken to address the situation.

Video: What to Do When You Get Involved in a Car Accident in the Philippines

For more information about the actual steps or list of things that you need to do in case you get involved in a car accident while driving in the Philippines, then you may check out this video from Meljean Solon:


Being prepared and knowledgeable about the necessary steps to take in the event of a car accident is an important part of being a driver and car owner. It is important in ensuring everyone’s safety and navigating through the aftermath effectively. From checking for injuries and documenting the scene to cooperating with authorities and contacting insurance providers, following a structured approach can help mitigate risks and expedite resolution processes. Understanding liability laws, such as those against reckless driving and speeding, also emphasizes the importance of responsible behavior on the road, ensuring road safety for all.

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