Road accidents are an unavoidable part of using vehicles. According to reports published by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MORTH), there were more than 3.66 lakh road accidents in 2020. In these accidents, more than 1.31 lakh lives were lost, while more than 3.48 lakh individuals suffered injuries. (Source: https://morth.nic.in/sites/default/files/RA_2020.pdf).
Though the incidents of accidents reduced by 18.46% in 2020 compared to 2019 (Source: https://morth.nic.in/sites/default/files/RA_2020.pdf), they were still prevalent. So, if you own a car, you face a constant risk of accidents when driving the car in India, even when you are a careful driver.
Though accidents can prove to be unavoidable, how you respond to them is what makes a difference. So, here are some crucial things that you should do after a car accident –
- Avoid fleeing the accident site
This is the first and the most responsible thing to do. Do not run away from the scene of the accident. Stay at the scene and review the damage. This would also help you report the damage to the insurance company correctly.
- Avoid possible consequential losses
There are chances of consequential losses after an accident. For instance, the fuel leak from your car might aggravate the claim and cause an explosion.
Such consequential losses have dual repercussions. First, they increase the extent of damage suffered. Second, they are not covered under your car insurance policy. So, if there is a consequential loss, you will have to bear considerable out-of-pocket expenses.
So, after an accident, try to control the damages. See if there’s any possibility of a consequential loss and try and minimise the probability of the same.
- Inform the police or traffic authorities
The authorities must be informed about the accident so they can file the accident on record. Moreover, they can also lend a helping hand in difficult situations and ensure that you do not violate any legal rules or regulations.
So, file a police FIR and also inform the concerned traffic authorities of the accident. Give a detailed account of the incident so that the FIR records the accident as clearly as possible. This will also help you in settlement of your insurance claim.
- Take pictures of the damage for evidence
For evidentiary proof, click photos of the damages that you have suffered. Car insurance companies like Maruti car insurance also allow photographs as evidence in your claim. You can also intimate your claim online and submit the photos as proof to start your claim process at the earliest.
- Seek medical attention, if required
If you or another individual has suffered any injury, seek immediate medical attention. Call an ambulance for severe wounds and get checked for any internal injuries that you or the other individual might have suffered.
- Inform your insurance company
The policy will cover the repair costs if you have a comprehensive car insurance policy from credible providers like Maruti car insurance and your car is damaged in an accident. Moreover, in the case of any third-party liability, your insurance company will handle the underlying financial liability.
- File the claim with the correct information
When filing your car insurance claim, you need to provide all the correct information to the insurance company as well as to the police authorities. So, report the incident in as much detail as possible so that no aspect is left out. This will ease up the claim process as the insurer will not dispute the claim on any hidden aspect of the incident.
- Keep all documents handy
You will have to submit the relevant documents when reporting your car insurance claim. These documents include the police FIR, insurance policy copy, driving license and RC book copy, identity proof, etc. Arrange all the documents and keep them handy. Also, keep the evidence of all accident-related documents in order so that you can submit them with the claim to speed up the process.
- Follow-up with your insurer
Once your claim is filed with the insurance company, follow up and check your claim status regularly to check the expected settlement time. Follow-ups will also ensure that if any document is missing or if the insurer requires something from your end, you can fulfil the requirement to ease up the claim settlement.
To Sum Up
These steps will smoothen the repercussions that usually occur after the accident. You will be able to file your claim correctly and get it settled quickly. Also, you will be able to discharge your duties as a responsible citizen and alleviate the hassles of the accident.