Being involved in a vehicle accident, even just a minor one, can be distressing. Hopefully it’s something that never happens to you, but if it does, it’s important to know what to do as soon as it happens and immediately afterwards.
1. Call emergency services if necessary
If the accident has created a dangerous situation – perhaps because it’s happened on a busy freeway, for example – and you need assistance, get to a safe area and call emergency services straight away. The most important thing is the safety of anyone involved in the accident, as well as any other drivers and pedestrians who may be nearby.
You should also call the police right away if the other driver doesn’t stop. Try to get as many details of their vehicle as you can should this happen, particularly their licence plate number.
2. Take down details
There’s likely to be a lot happening at the scene of an accident, so it’s important to take notes and pictures of the damage. Some important things to capture include:
- Details of the other driver such as their name, residential address, licence number, vehicle registration number, contact details and so on
- Description of the accident
- Photos of the accident and, in particular, any damage to any vehicles involved
- Time and date of the accident
- Names and details of any witnesses (including their phone numbers)
- Police report number if you lodge a police report
3. Contact your insurer to make a claim
Get in touch with your insurance company as soon as possible to file a claim. Typically you’ll need to provide your insurer with:
- Your details
- The details you’ve captured (see above)
If your car insurance is with CommInsure you can call 13 2423 at any time, day or night, or lodge your claim online. Once your claim is received, CommInsure will SMS you your claim number where possible.
4. Find a smash repairer
After you have lodged your claim with your insurer, it’s time to get your damaged car fixed. Your insurer can suggest a smash repairer, or you may prefer to nominate a repairer of your choice. If your car is unable to be safely driven, your insurer may also help you organise a tow truck.