As a vehicle owner and driver, it’s not only important to know the road rules for safety, but also to know what to do in case of an accident. Road accidents in South Africa are a very common occurrence and you could be involved in an accident at any given moment. Better safe than sorry, and rather be prepared than helpless.
Just by knowing the right thing to do, you could save a life or help prevent a worse situation.
Here is everything you need to know about handling a car crash to make the situation less daunting and confusing.
Before we even get into the steps, we’re going to put forward the importance of having car insurance; especially if you are a frequent driver and use your car every day.
Car insurance can be a lifesaver in case of an accident. Cover from insurance makes the whole process of an accident much simpler and quicker to get through. Therefore, the first thing you do when you get into an accident is to contact your insurance provider!
– Call your insurance
First things first, call your insurer! If you’ve been in a minor accident or a major accident, call for roadside assistance immediately. Depending on the type of insurance you have and what it covers, your insurance provider will handle everything from the towing to the report, to even organizing an emergency medical response to the scene.
– Take in the situation
Take a breath and take a moment to take in what happened so that you have a clear understanding and can explain in proper details when you need to make the accident report. Don’t forget to take pictures of the damage as well!
If you have car insurance, make sure that no other towing company tows your car without the approval of your insurer as this will cause later complications with the claim and incur an extra payout on your end.
– Get the details of the other person/s involved
If it was just a minor accident and no one is injured, chat with the person involved and make sure you get all their necessary contact details. You’ll need to provide these details to your insurance provider and include them on the accident report. So make sure you ask for their full name, ID number, car registration and phone number. If the person/s involved in the accident refused to engage and try to speed off, make sure you take down their car registration number if you can!
– Report to police
The next step is to file an accident report at the police station. Once you have all the necessary details and have spoken with your insurer, it’s time to make the report.
You’ll have to make sure you do this within 24 hours of the accident, and you need to provide the case number of your accident report to your insurance.
– Discuss settlement
Once the above is done, the rest is up to your insurance! They’ll sort out all the nitty-gritty details and get in touch with you to discuss the settlement of the accident case. If you are unsure of anything, remember to ask questions. Any unanswered questions you may have will make the accident report process easier to handle the next time.
What to do if you’re in a major car accident
The above helps to guide you through the steps to take in case of a minor or regular car accident, but what can you do if you’re involved in a bad accident?
Step one: Stay Calm! Take in your surroundings and try not to panic. Take deep breaths until you are aware of your situation and are settled enough to take action.
Step two: If you’re able to move, get yourself out of the vehicle if you can and anyone else in the car, and call emergency medical response if anyone is badly injured. Next, make sure you call your insurance as well.
Step three: If anyone else in the other car, if another car was involved, is badly injured and stuck, do not move them unless you need to move something off of them or away from them. If someone has been impaled or otherwise badly injured, it’s best not to move them in case it makes the situation worse. Rather wait for medical assistance and talk to them to keep them conscious and alert. Wait for the emergency assistance to arrive.
Road accidents are inevitable, and no matter how careful you are on the roads, you can’t control or prevent the actions of others.
By using our guidelines above, you can at least be more prepared and know how best to handle a car crash. Always phone your insurance provider first if you have car insurance. If you do not have car insurance, we suggest you invest in it as soon as possible. Car insurance is extremely beneficial for accident cover and makes the whole process easier.
Contact our experts at Quality Quote and we’ll help find the best insurance quotes for you!