Being in a car accident can leave you shaken and in shock, things become a blur and it can be hard sometimes to focus and think straight. Whether you’ve had more accidents than hot dinners or it’s your first there are some important steps you need to follow to ensure everything is handled correctly.
Get off the road
Firstly, if it’s not possible move your car to a safe location and you cannot get off the road then make sure you and your passengers are out of the car and out of harm’s way.
Once you’re out the car you need to assess the situation and make sure that everyone is ok. Make any necessary calls; do you need an ambulance or the police? It‘s generally in your best interest to notify the police in any case so they can make a report – you never know when you may need it.
If you have had a collision with another vehicle you need to obtain some information, who was driving the car? Get their name and contact details. Write down the name of their insurance company, their policy number and the contact number so you can make any necessary calls after. Now you need to get the vehicle information, get the year, make, model, colour, and registration plate. Then make a note of the time and date and the weather conditions at the time of the accident.
If you have a camera phone it’s advisable to take a photo of the scene as evidence. If your car isn’t drivable or you don’t feel safe driving it after the accident then get it towed away, often the police will know a towing company and call a truck for you.
After the Accident
Where possible it may be worthwhile jotting down a few notes about what happened, such information like an estimated speed you were travelling when the accident happened and a description of the scene and relevant road markings and obstructions may also be worth noting down for future reference. This will give you a clear note of what happened in order to inform the insurance company correctly.
Most insurance companies will have a 24 hour hotline that you can call to report a claim. It’s essential you do this as soon as possible. Again if there was another vehicle involved you will also need to contact their insurance company to report the claim. You will need to provide the company and statement of everything that happened. Remember your insurance company are there to help you, provide advice and answer any questions you may have.
Once you have been assigned a claim number you will know which insurance company has accepted liability, the insurance company will make recommendations for repair companies but you can choose whoever you want. Then the relevant company will write you an appraisal so you can call up the repair shop of your choice and get your vehicle repaired.
This post was written by Emily Lockey on behalf of Accident Express, who specialise in accident repairs in Birmingham.