Were you down on Lakeshore Drive and a car with out-of-state plates crashed into your back bumper? Maybe you were cruising along County Road C and encountered a deer that bounced into the road. Once you have determined that nobody is seriously injured, what do you need to next?
Pick Up the Phone
Even though you live in the small town of Montello, WI, it is still a state regulation that any accident resulting in more than $1000 in damages must be reported to the sheriff. So, if you see any kind of body damage, call 911 right away. It might take more than a few minutes for a car to get to you, so while you wait, contact us over ar Giuffre Insurance, and we can help you start the claim process.
The Information You Need for a Complete Accident Report
We will be happy to take any information you have right away. However, if you are sitting outside of town where there is no cell signal, make sure to gather as much data as possible.
- Collect the name, address, drivers license number, and phone number of the other driver–even if you are thinking about not filing a claim.
- If you have your smartphone with you, take a picture of their license and their car.
- Record the license plate and the make, model, and year of the vehicle.
- If anybody is complaining of any kind of injury or saying they are just fine, write that down.
- Gather the names and phone numbers of other passengers and witnesses.
- Use the camera on your phone to snap pics of both vehicles as they sit–showing both cars in the image.
- Take close up pics of all the damage, no matter how minor.
- Turn around and record the landscape, including intersections, turns in the road, lane markers, and traffic signs.
- Cooperate as much as possible with the sheriff when they arrive.
- Write down or use your voice recorder to document how you remember it all happening. Do it now–memories become fuzzier with time.
Protecting Yourself by Saying the Right Thing
If you are the kind of person who always wants to make it better for others, the immediate aftermath of a fender bender can be very stressful. Do your best to avoid saying, “It’s my fault,” or “I’m sorry I did that.” Those words can get put into the police report, which may be the main source of information for determining which driver is at-fault. Do all you can to provide first aid, call for help, and inquire after their health. Beyond that, it is best to wait in or near your car and say as little as possible unless you speak to the police.
Giuffre Insurance is always here to answer any questions you may have about your auto insurance policy, the process of filing a claim. Give us a call or swing by our office today.