What to do if you’ve had a car accident

25 February 2021

What to do when you have a car accident

You don’t know how stressful having a car accident is until you’ve had one. And this is a fate we wouldn’t wish upon anyone, regardless of whether it’s just a fender bender or something more serious. Knowing what to do in the event of a car accident ensures the incident is dealt with properly and that you can confidently capture all the required information.

Make sure everyone is safe

The safety of everyone after an accident is paramount, so the first step is to make sure all parties are ok. In an emergency call 000 for ambulance and police assistance, especially if someone is injured, there’s major damage or the road is blocked.

You should also make sure that you are in a safe location away from traffic. Move your car out of the way and off the road if possible, then turn off the engine and switch your hazard lights on.

Exchange details with the other party

When interacting with all parties involved, it’s important to keep your emotions in check – regardless of who’s at fault. You should exchange the following details with the other driver(s):

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Registration number
  • Insurance details.

Useful information you should also record:

  • Date, time and location of the accident
  • Name, address and phone number of any witnesses
  • Photos of the crash site and damage to cars or property.

Report the accident

To the police

The criteria for when it’s necessary to report a car accident to the police varies from state to state, however there are some universal situations when police attendance is required:

  • Someone is trapped, injured or killed
  • A party fails to stop and exchange details
  • A driver appears to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • There are hazards present. For example, a blocked road or significant debris, leaking fluids, structural damage to property, etc.

To your insurer

Contact your insurer as soon as possible so that your recollection of the accident is still fresh in your mind. Also, depending on your car insurance policy, you may have some form of vehicle towing coverage, if required. With a GIO Car Insurance policy you may also be covered for emergency repairs, up to $500. Additionally, the sooner you commence the claims process, the sooner we can get you back on the road.

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Car accidents occur unexpectedly, which is why knowing what to do in advance and having a simple process in place can help you confidently deal with the situation. With GIO you know that help is just a phone call away – speak to one of our knowledgeable insurance specialists today on 13 10 10 and stop thinking you’re covered, know with GIO.

Insurance is issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as GIO Insurance. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement before buying this insurance.