A guide to dealing with a rental car wreak.
Whether you’ve rented a car abroad or for a staycation, having an accident can be a traumatic experience. Even if nobody is hurt, you could be liable for certain damages so it’s important to know what to do. It’s also advisable to ensure your rental car is safe to drive before you embark on your road trip. Go through the necessary checklist, insurance, and other paperwork. At least you will have a better idea of your rights in the case of an accident. If the unfortunate does occur, here are five things you need to do.
Ensure the safety of passengers and other drivers
First things first, get everyone to safety. This may involve directing traffic or enlisting the help of other drivers. Here are some basic first aid tips on how to help safely after an accident. Once you have cleared the road, you can then contact the relevant authorities.
Call the authorities
Call the police and report the accident. If you are abroad somewhere you don’t speak the language see if a passerby can help you. The police should arrive on the scene with an ambulance to treat any injuries. If the accident was serious fireman may also be involved. Even if there were minimal injury and damage to the vehicle, it’s still necessary to report it. This will help you in the future if you need to provide official documentation.
Speak to your rental company
Report the accident to your rental company immediately as well. They will be able to go over their policy with you and explain what you need to do. It’s likely that they will send someone to the scene or a replacement vehicle, but it really depends on the company you work with. That’s why it’s important to carry out rental car checks before you leave and to do your research on the company.
Take details from the other driver
If another driver was involved in the incident you will need to exchange details if possible. This will help the rental company clear you of any insurance liabilities if the accident wasn’t your fault. The local authorities will also be able to use this information. Here is a list of the details you need after an accident. You may have to give your details or those of the rental company to the other driver, so ask the rental company about this when you call them.
File an accident report
As long as the authorities are involved, they should automatically file an accident report. This is an official record of the event and any important details. You can retrieve this information at a later date if you need to do resolve any legal disputes. If an accident occurs while you’re driving a rental car you could be liable but it depends on the level of damage to the rental and third-party vehicle. Ensure you fully understand what your rental insurance policy covers, and do the necessary vehicle checks to drive as safely as possible.
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