Your Auto Accident Checklist – During and After the Accident
Auto accidents are never expected and always inconvenient. Getting into a car accident is stressful, and typically moves quickly from the incident itself, to the aftermath. With the average number of car accidents being close to six million in the United States every year, it’s necessary to understand the steps you need to follow during and after an accident. Being prepared can help you to overcome any possible financial inconveniences, and will get you back on the road quickly and safely. One step you can take now would be to determine your preferred auto body repair shop. Call your local dealer, your trusted mechanic, and ask your friends where they go. Having an auto body shop on hand will help your tremendously in your time of need.
As one of Boulder, Colorado’s premium auto collision repair shops, we at Colorado Coach Auto Body want to make sure our current and future customers are prepared. Here’s a quick guideline for what you should do during and after an auto accident.
Auto Accident Checklist – During the Accident:
- Remain as calm as possible, and check for injuries within your vehicle.
- Call the police. They will ask if an ambulance is needed. Depending on the severity of the accident, it’s likely an ambulance will be necessary.
- Turn on your vehicles hazard lights. It’s possible that you could be blocking traffic in a high-moving area. If it’s safe, pull your vehicle off to the side of the road.
- Gather the contact, vehicle and insurance information of the involved drivers.
- Contact – name, phone number, email and home address
- Vehicle – VIN number, make, model, year
- Insurance – insurance company name, agent name and phone number, policy number, relationship to policy holder, date of coverage
- Gather the contact information of any witnesses.
- Take notes including details about the damage on each of the vehicles, and what happened during the event. This will come in handy once you give your police statement.
- Take pictures using your cell phone or other camera of the vehicle damage and scene of the accident.
- Give your police statement. Do not accept fault. State the facts, and only give your statement to the police.
Make sure you have all the information you need to file your claim with insurance before leaving the scene of the accident. In instanced where your car needs to be towed from the lot, knowing your preferred, dealer certified shop in your area is helpful. Do not let your insurance company bully you into working with a non-certified, or cheaper auto body shop. At Colorado Coach, we work with all major auto insurance providers, and typically work directly with the insurance provider to ensure your car gets the approval it needs.
Auto Accident Checklist – After the Accident:
- Call your preferred auto body shop. Depending on your vehicles manufacturer, you’ll want to get a recommendation as to which auto collision repair shop to go to. For example, at Colorado Coach, we hold a multitude of certifications with dealers like Audi, BMW, Subaru, Aston Martin, and more. You’ll want to ensure you’re choosing a high caliber, and recommended shop for your repair.
- If you haven’t chosen an auto body shop:
- Get the list of certified repair shops in your area from your auto dealer.
- Call your trusted mechanic for a recommendation.
- Ask friends where to go.
- File your insurance claim. We recommend that your vehicle is at your preferred shop prior to filing the insurance claim. Your insurance provider can work with the auto collision shop to work through any hidden damage and additional coverage needs.
- Do not drive a damaged vehicle. Make sure you get your vehicle to your preferred shop soon after the accident, and do not drive with damages.
- Make sure your shop uses Original Factory Parts vs. Aftermarket Parts. Original factory parts are certified by the auto dealer, and are up to specification. Aftermarket parts are cheaper, but can void warranties and cause additional issues.
Remember, you have the right to go to the auto body repair shop of your choosing. If you’ve been in an accident in the Boulder, Colorado region, or anywhere along the Front Range, we’d love the opportunity to be your preferred auto collision repair shop!