It is estimated that the average driver will be a part of three to four accidents over the course of their life, meaning no matter how cautiously you drive there is a good chance you will be involved in an accident at some point. Since it is unlikely you’ll be able to completely avoid getting into an accident, the next best thing is knowing what to do when you are involved in an accident (and, as a side note, Team Ford suggests you always keep an emergency kit in your vehicle for an accidents). Read on and be prepared as to what to do after an accident.
The first thing you should do after an accident is asking if anyone is injured. If the answer is yes, or if you suspect that the other driver is impaired, call 911 and leave the vehicles where they are. The next step will be ensuring that the crash site is safe — whether that means putting on your four-way lights, setting out a warning triangle, or a pylon (or pylons). From there, you can move on to collecting information. If someone is injured, contact emergency services. Do not attempt to treat a victim unless you have medical training, or unless there is aneed for immediate action, like removing someone from imminent danger (even if you are trained, do not act unless you yourself aren’t in any type of danger).
If there are no injuries, none of the drivers are suspected to be impaired, the vehicles are still drivable, and everyone has their proper documentation, you can go to an agreed upon police station to file a collision report. If one or more vehicles are not drivable, or one or move drivers do not have the proper information, then call (780) 423-4567 (you can also dial #377 from your mobile device) to alert police that there has been an accident, but it is not an emergency. If police come to the scene of the accident, you should ask them for the report number or file number from the accident report, for future reference.
The information you want to collect after an accident is as follows, in no particular order: name, insurance, registration, driver’s license number, and their license plate number. You will also want to get names and contact info from any witnesses to the accident. And if you have a camera phone, you should take photos of all the documents as well as the scene of the accident — only if it is safe to do so. If it is possible to move the vehicles, you should not do so until you’ve exchanged information, or if you suspect a driver is impaired.
It is illegal to leave the scene after an accident, and if the combined damage to vehicles or property involved is over $2,000, you must go to a police station and file a Collision Report Form. Failure to do so could result in a fine, and or possible demerits. You should bring all photos or applicable information as well. At the scene of an accident, you should not discuss liability or responsibility for an accident, and you definitely shouldn’t sign any statements regarding fault. Do not accept any money, or discuss a settlement. Allow the insurance company adjusters, and police to determine culpability. And make sure to contact your insurance company; even if you pay out of pocket, the insurance company needs to know and, can cancel your policy if they find out you failed to report an accident.
When you speak to your insurance company after an accident, you will want to check to confirm your coverage, and request a proof of loss claim form (fill it out as soon as possible!). From there, you can have your vehicle appraised. It is likely that your insurer will suggest a body shop for you to go to — but you are allowed to take your vehicle to the repair shop of your choice. Team Ford suggests you go to Fusion Collision Body Shop, as it is part of the Canadian Certified Collision Care Network, and the top Edmonton body shop specializing in restoring vehicles to their original factory condition. The shop will provide you an estimate of costs, which should specify: what repairs are being done, whether parts are being repaired or replaced, whether parts are new or second-hand, and whether parts are generic or original manufacturer’s parts (and how the warranties may differ).
So as you can see, there are quite a few things to be aware of after an accident; it is important to be diligent, and report the accident to both police and your insurance company. For example, autobody shops are prohibited from making collision-related repairs of more than $2,000 to a vehicle without a damage sticker (issued by police after filling out a collision report), and the same thing applies to auto-wreckers. Again, it is unlikely that you will never be a part of an accident, but if you are prepared the experience may become substantially easier. If you’ve been in an accident, and want your Ford back to its original condition, we suggest you visit our affiliate Fusion Collision — for all your repair needs.