Being involved in a collision is always a stressful experience. However, being prepared in the event of an accident can make it a little easier to deal with if it happens to you. Here are some guidelines for what to do if you are involved in an auto accident.
How can I be prepared in the event of an accident?-
One of the best things you can do is put an emergency safety kit in your car. That way, if you are in an accident, you will have everything you need to help you cope. Your vehicle safety kit should include a flashlight and batteries, a tow rope, paper towels, a first-aid kit, drinking water, and a blanket, but feel free to add any other emergency-preparedness equipment that can help you. It is also a good idea to keep a list of emergency contacts, as well as insurance and registration information readily available in your glove compartment, as you will need that info for police or emergency response vehicles if you are in a collision.
What do I do at the scene of an accident?-
When you are in an auto accident, you must be sure never to leave the scene. The first thing you should do is make sure the occupants of both your vehicle and the other vehicle are all right, and call 911 for medical assistance if anyone is injured. If the accident doesn’t require a medical response, call the police and find out if an officer needs to be present or if information can just be exchanged between both involved parties. Additionally, if your vehicle is no longer drivable, contact roadside assistance for towing to a body shop or other repair facility.
Which information should I exchange with the other motorist?–
First and foremost, it is essential that you do not admit fault under any circumstances to anyone other than your insurance provider. You and the motorist you collided with will need to exchange the following information in order to file the accident report and process insurance claims:
- Contact Information– Names, phone numbers, addresses, email addresses of motorists and witnesses
- Insurance information– Company name, policy number, phone number of insurance company
- Location of the accident (exact address or cross streets)
- Photos of the accident scene and all vehicles involved
- Police report number (if applicable), contact information of the police officer
How do I file an insurance claim?- As soon as you are able, contact your insurance provider either by phone or online to report the claim. You will need to make an appointment with a claims adjuster to assess your vehicle’s damage and get a repair estimate. If your vehicle has had to be towed to a body shop, you can arrange to have the adjuster assess your car at the facility. Once the estimate has been completed, your insurance company will let you know how much they will be paying out for repair, or if the car has been deemed a “total loss,” in which case the car will not be repaired and you will receive a check for the estimated value of your car which you can use to purchase another vehicle.
Sherrill Paint & Body Co. works with all major insurance companies and can assist you with the claims adjusting process. If you reside in the Birmingham, AL area, we are here to help you! Call us today for towing assistance or for a free collision repair estimate– 205-322-5684.