What to Do if You're Involved in an Accident
By Universal Underwriters Group's Loss Prevention Department

In a typical 12-month period, there are more than six million vehicle accidents in the U.S. If your employees are involved in a collision while driving a company-owned vehicle, will they know what to do following the accident?

“This is definitely one area where you want to get involved before an accident occurs,” says Daryl Allegree, Universal Underwriters Manager of Loss Prevention. “Educating your drivers about what to do immediately following an accident is critical.”

Here are some tips we recommend that you communicate to your drivers:

  • Do not leave the accident scene. If your vehicle is creating a safety hazard or you’re concerned with your personal safety, pull off the road or move to a safer place. Use warning signals.
  • If anyone is injured, see that he or she receives proper medical attention and call an ambulance. Do not administer medical treatment or first aid unless you are qualified to do so.
  • Call the police immediately and follow their instructions.
  • Do not make statements concerning the accident to anyone except police officials. Do not make settlements under any circumstances.
  • Do not admit fault. Anything you say to the police or the other driver can be used against you later.
  • Do not argue at the scene of the accident; be courteous.
  • Complete a preliminary accident report in detail while you are at the accident scene. This should cover basic facts about the accident, including date, time, location, road condition, weather, visibility, direction vehicles were headed and their speed, and whether the police took a report and issued tickets.
  • Get names, addresses, phone numbers, and license numbers of the other drivers and passengers. Also get the make of vehicles involved in the accident.
  • Get names, addresses and phone numbers of all witnesses. This is very important, so get as many as possible.

We recommend that you keep information about what to do following an accident in each company vehicle.

Universal Underwriters publishes an “Accident Assistance Guide”. The guide should be kept in each company-owned vehicle (with vehicle registration and proof of insurance). It covers the steps listed above and includes a preliminary accident report form, enabling your employee to gather critical information at the accident scene.

The “Accident Assistance Guide” is available to all Universal Underwriters’ customers. To request copies, please call your Universal Underwriters representative or 1-800-840-8842, ext. 4845.

For information about how Universal Underwriters Group’s Special Account Services Division can help meet the special needs of your automotive recycling business, call 1-800-840-8842, ext. 4845, visit our web site at www.universalunderwriters.com or send us an e-mail at uuic.specaccts@zurichna.com.

This article is provided for informational purposes only. Please consult with qualified legal counsel to address your particular circumstances and needs. Universal Underwriters Group is not providing legal advice and assumes no liability concerning the information set forth above.