15 May, 18

I’ve Just Had A Car Accident: What Should I Do?

I've Just Had An Accident: What Should I Do?You’ve just got into a minor accident with another car, but regardless of it being a small collision, you’re still reeling from the shock! Adrenaline is coursing through your veins, and millions of questions are whizzing through your head like ‘is anyone hurt’, ‘was it my fault’ and ‘how much is my car damaged?’

Once the preliminary shock wears off though and you’re sure nobody is seriously injured, it’s essential to try and be calm and ask yourself ‘what do I need to do now?’

What do you need to do? Well, if you continue reading, we’ve provided you with a detailed guide that will help you, if you ever find yourself in this situation.

What To Do Straight After The Accident

Before even thinking about who’s to blame or when you’re going to call your insurance company, you first need to think about everyone’s safety. So if both vehicles are drivable, then you should move the cars to the side of the road, to avoid blocking the roads and causing traffic.

Once you’re out of harm’s way, you must turn off the engine completely and switch the hazard lights on. If it is a minor accident and nobody sustained any injuries, you should take down a note of this fact in case, later on, the other driver or drivers attempt to claim for an injury. However, if people were hurt, be sure to call the police and the ambulance straight away.

It’s normal to be shocked and dazed after an accident, but the best solution is to remain as calm as possible, taking a few deep breaths and trying to gather your wits as best as you can. Avoid a heated situation by reigning your temper in, don’t get angry or you could make the situation worse.

Regardless of who the cause of the accident was, do not admit that it was your fault, just remain composed throughout the process. If in the heat of the moment, you utter ‘I’m sorry’ or ‘it was my fault’, whether or not you are in fact to blame, the other driver can use these statements against you when claiming.

When To Involve The Police

    There are a few scenarios where police should be called, some being:

  • If the other driver or drivers leave the accident site without exchanging any information.
  • If you believe that the other driver involved doesn’t have insurance or is displaying signs of alcohol or drug consumption.
  • If you are under the impression that the other driver may have purposely caused the accident.

Swap Motoring Information There And Then

During the after-shock and commotion that occurs post-accident, drivers often forget to exchange the important information they need for dealing with insurance. Therefore, however long it takes, you should ensure that each party trades these things:

  • The name and contact details of each driver and the passengers involved in the accident, including addresses.
  • Insurance details must be exchanged.
  • If there were any passengers or witnesses, it’s better to get their names and contact details.
  • Ask the other driver if they are the registered owner of the car, if not, then find out who is the owner and get their details too.

What To Take Note Of At The Accident Scene

You would think exchanging motoring information would be enough, but you need to be thorough in recording all the details of the accident, such as where the accident took place, in which conditions it occurred, etc. You should ensure you record the following details:

  • When exactly the accident happened, so date and time should be noted.
  • The location of where the accident happened (address).
  • Details of the cars involved, such as make, model, colour and the number plate.
  • If you can recall, record how certain conditions were when you were driving, such as the weather, the quality of the road and the lighting.
  • What was the extent of the damage to the vehicles and where was it?
  • You must record if any of the drivers, passengers or pedestrians sustained any injuries.
  • If there were witnesses to the collision, note down their names and contact details.
  • Take as many pictures as you can of the accident area, making sure you get close-ups of the damage to the cars.

If you caused an accident to a parked car, and nobody else was involved, then you must leave your information on a note on the car, for example. If you depart the scene without leaving any details and a witness or a CCTV caught your number plate, you could be in serious trouble.

Inform Your Insurance Company Of The Accident & Make A Claim

It’s ideal if you can ring your insurance company there and then, and you will be asked for these details:

  • Identification, so they’ll ask for your information and your policy number.
  • A record of all the cars involved in the accident, so they’ll ask for the vehicle registration numbers.
  • The name, address and contact number of the driver.
  • If you managed to obtain them, they will ask for the driver’s insurance information.

Time To Think About Repairing Your Vehicle

Steps To Take After A Car AccidentDepending on the extent of the damage to your vehicle, your insurance will decide if it is worth repairing or it may be a write-off.

If your insurance company agrees your car can be salvaged, then you should have a body shop in mind that you want to take your car to, for any damages that need repairing.

Your insurance company will most likely give you a list of approved automotive repair shops and will urge you to choose one from that list. If you have a shop in mind that is not on their list, they may say that you will have to pay an additional excess or they may not pay the full cost of your repairs, however, it is a legal right of yours to choose where you trust your car to get repaired, so you can argue that point with them.

If you ever find yourself in the unfortunate situation of having to repair damage to your vehicle caused by an accident, you don’t need to worry about finding a trusted repair shop! We, at Bodyteq, are an insurance approved bodyshop, that provides a streamlined superior service that will get you through the insurance process without any troubles!

If you decide you want to claim, we handle the entire process! From recovering the vehicle to our premises, inspecting the damage, sending estimates to your insurer and gaining authorisation to proceed with the repairs. We take the matter into our own hands, so you don’t have to keep ringing your insurance company and do all the running around. All you have to do is patiently wait for your car to be restored back to its pre-accident condition!

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