What to do in a car accident with no injury?
Nobody wants to get into an accident and regardless of whose fault it was, the most important thing is to ensure that everybody is fine after an accident. It is important to stay calm in these kinds of situation and do the necessary procedures to minimise any liability which may occur from your end. In the following illustration and guides we assume that there are no injuries involved at the point of the accident.
The general procedures of an accident with no injuries are as follows,
- Alight vehicle and assess the damages.
- Exchange driver particulars and record car plate number
- Proceed to take photos of the accident
- Towing or driving to your car workshop
- Reporting the Accident to Insurer
Assessing for Damages and drivability of vehicle.
In the event of an accident, immediately stop your vehicle and alight only when it is safe to do so, and it is important to not shift your vehicle during this time so as to accurately document the accident. You will first assess the damages and whether it is safe to be near the vehicles. It may be unsafe to stay near your vehicle if you see smoke fuming out of the engine area. Even if there is no threat to your safety, you will also have to determine whether your car can still be driven or whether it will require towing and you might as well do so now since you are already checking on the car.
Some simple signs that your vehicle is not in a drivable condition is oil or any other substance leaking from under the vehicle, or when it is late at night and your headlights are damaged as your safety and visibility while driving will be compromised. It is also possible that your vehicle may not be driving straight due to the damages incurred and may be difficult and potentially unsafe for you to manoeuvre around.
In general, we do not advise driving a damaged vehicle unless it is really near your car workshop or accident reporting centre since you will not be able to assess the damage of it’s internals. When in doubt, you can contact towing services to have your vehicle towed and you can do so at this point since it will take some time for the tow truck to arrive. We recommend using Shenton Recovery Pte Ltd where they provide 24/7 service for towing and even provide on-site services for tyre and battery replacement.
Exchange driver particulars.
Secondly, you will need to try to exchange driver’s particular with the other party. Some of the important details to exchange include,
- Driver’s Full Name
- NRIC or FIN (e.g 321A)
- Car Plate Number
- Contact Number
- Insurer Details
While it is not required, these details are collected and will be presented to your insurance company and can help speed up the process for the filing and submission of claims.
Taking Photographs of Accident
Once that is all done, proceed to take photographs of the accident as this may be required to determine the liability of parties in the event of a dispute which brings back to the point of not shifting the vehicles unless required. We recommend taking photographs of the accident first before exchanging driver’s particulars in the event where you are causing an obstruction and proceed to shift the vehicles to a more appropriate position to exchange driver’s particulars. The photos taken should consists of the following.
- Photograph of the accident scene. (Ensure that the photo contains enough information such as both vehicles can be seen, road markings and other details which are relevant to the accident such as skid marks and oil patches)
- Photograph of the damages to both vehicles. (If involved in a multi-vehicle collision you only need to take vehicles in front and behind of you.)
When photographing, always try to include the vehicle plate of the vehicles whenever possible.
You should also remember or take note of the location of the accident, with respect to the date and time as well as the road conditions when the accident occurred.
Prepare and retrieve the dash camera’s video recording of when the accident occurred to submit to your insurer.
Although not required to be done immediately, you should report to your insurer as soon as possible regardless of the method of settlement. However, if you and your counterparty decide not to private settle, we suggest visiting the accident reporting centre of your insurer immediately after the accident while submitting all the details you have documented above.
You should always report to your insurance company within 24 hours, as if you fail to do so, you will not be covered by the insurance policy and will be required to pay for the claims. You will also lose your NCD as well as potentially the right to renew your policy.
You will not be required to contact the traffic police and inform them of your accident if there are no injuries involved. (Which is the case assumed here)
It is also strongly advised to not be involved with any unauthorised tow trucks that appear the at the scene of the accident which may ask you to do the repairs at their workshop instead.
Where should I do the repair.
Once all the above have been done, you can consider repairing at your own workshop or proceed to an authorised workshop by your insurance company. If you are at the accident reporting centre, usually they will assist you in the following procedures if you choose to proceed with the repair with them. However, you can also consider repairing the vehicle at your preferred location as well. We advise doing so if the repair cost of doing it at your workshop is lower than the insurance excess you will have to pay or that you are incredibly certain that it was the counterparty’s fault.
(Note that not all insurance will cover such repairs by your own workshop if liability of the accident is deemed to be yours.)
It is also to note that in the event where the vehicle is severely damaged and beyond repair, it may be scrapped. You will then be paid a fair market value by your insurer. If you are worried about your precious vehicle being scrapped you may wish to read up on your previous article which determines when a vehicle will be scrapped in the event of an accident here.
All in all, getting into the accident means more tedious procedures that you will have to go through that you normally would not. Nobody likes to get into accidents. We thank you for reading all the way to the end and hope that our guide has given you some insight on the necessary procedures to do in the event of an accident.