Know what to do after an accident

The Road Traffic Management Corporation recently released its annual road fatality statistics for last year.

According to the report, 1 120 more people died on the roads last year compared to 2015, the highest annual road death toll since 2007.

“Even though accidents are a frighteningly common occurrence on our roads, it’s scary how many people have no idea what to do after they have one,” said Budget Insurance’s spokesperson, Susan Steward.

The first thing to do after you are involved in an accident is to stop.

“In an accident that causes injury and/or death or which causes damage to property, a person or any animal, you’re required by law to stop your vehicle,” said Steward.

After you’ve stopped, and if you’re not badly hurt, you need to find out if others are injured, she added. In this case, call emergency services. Do not try and help them yourself as this could make the injury worse.

“If you think you’re seriously injured or even concussed, don’t attempt to move out of your vehicle. Unless there is an immediate danger, like smoke coming out of the car, rather wait for someone to help you. Also, if someone is injured in the accident, the vehicles may not be moved before the police or traffic officer has arrived.”

She said to make sure to get all the relevant information at the scene and to give yours to the other party involved to assist you in claiming from insurance, the Road Accident Fund as well as for the police case report.

Here are some steps to follow: 

  1. Stop your car, put on your hazards and make sure that everyone is fine. If someone needs medical help, call emergency services. If nobody is injured, move straight to step 2.
  2. Take photos of all damage to the vehicles and/or property.
  3. If possible, move the vehicles out of the road if they’re obstructing traffic.
  4. Exchange the following information: full names, ID numbers and contact details; vehicle registrations and descriptions; location and time of the accident; and the road and weather conditions.
  5. If your car isn’t drivable, call your insurer to get an approved tow.
  6. Report the accident to the police within 48 hours to get a case number. Do this before submitting a claim.

 

ALSO READ: 10 things to consider before starting your own business

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  AUTHOR
Neo Phashe
Journalist

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