Winter Weather Means Plan Ahead for Roadside Assistance
When You Need Roadside Assistance
You never expect to need emergency roadside assistance. But with the extreme winter weather this year, and with drivers still ignoring new regulations outlawing texting while driving, you may want to prepare for the unexpected-an auto accident.
Whether it’s an accident that has left your car undriveable, or you’re trying to avoid an accident by no longer driving on a flat tire, we’re here for you to help. If you’re unlucky enough to get into an accident, here are three simple strategies that can keep you safe until assistance arrives.
1. Call the Police
Even in a minor accident, call the police. The police will make a report memorializing the accident, which can make it easier when filing an insurance claim. In addition, you don’t know how the other driver will react. The police help to keep all parties safe. Before you exit the vehicle, first call highway patrol. Then let the other drive know you’ve done so. If he or she is already in a fit of road rage, notification that you’ve contacted the police can make that person think twice.
2. Pull Your Car Completely Off the Road
In the immediate adrenaline rush after an auto accident, you might forget about even the most basic safety precautions. Perhaps you’re just eager to survey the damage. Whatever the case, don’t let panic get the best of you. Pull your car completely off the road, if possible, and as far away from the roadside as you can. Then turn on your flashing hazard lights for optimum safety and visibility.
3. Gather as Much Information as You Can
Your car wreck might eventually end up in court, whether it’s litigating a personal injury claim, testifying in a reckless driving case, or just trying to avoid a ticket you don’t think you deserve. Evidence is your best friend in a court room, so take photos of the scene. Consider taking video, too, if at all possible. You’ll also want as much information about the other driver. And if he or she leaves the scene, write down as much as you can remember, making note of the driver’s license plate.
Memories can fade with time, so consider recording your memories of the accident immediately after it happens. Even brief bullet points about what you remember can help jog your memory later, and that record lends credence to your recollections. This can help you file an insurance claim, and can prove invaluable if you end up having to testify in a court case stemming from the accident.