We hope you will not find yourself numbered among the nearly ten million car accidents occurring on our nation’s roads each year. But if you are, the experts at the Insurance Information Institute recommend you take at least the following four steps:
1. Assess the damage: Is anyone injured? Can you pull the car off the road to avoid further risk?
2. Call the police or highway patrol. This will hasten proper medical response as well as assistance in protecting the accident site and vehicles. It will also help to document what happened, protecting you against other parties "changing stories" after the accident.
3. Collect as much information as possible. Names and contact information of everyone involved—drivers, passengers and witnesses—are needed. Get the other driver’s license information, auto registration and insurance ID card. Note the location, time of day and weather. Smartphones make an ideal recording device, so be sure to take photos. Keep to fact gathering; this is not the time to admit—or ask the other driver to admit—fault.
4. Notify us as soon as possible. The sooner you get the claims process started, the easier it will be to remember the details of the accident. Acting quickly will also help expedite repairs, medical payments and other covered compensation. Click here for options to report your claim.
Includes content reprinted by permission, The Mines Press, Inc. March 2015
Ken Cobb is owner of Pine Country Insurance and has been active in the insurance industry for over 15 years. Meet Ken.
Coverage descriptions found in this blog are summaries provided for general educational purposes and cannot fully detail the terms, conditions, limitations or exclusions of a specific insurance policy. Please read your policy carefully.