What to do If You’re Involved in a Hit and Run
6 Steps to Take After the Accident
Accidents are miserable. When the offending party takes off, they’re even worse. Being involved in a hit and run is similar to being involved in any accident, but there are a few extra steps that you will want to take so that your insurance claim, and subsequently your auto body repairs, can go much more quickly and smoothly.
Memorize Vehicle Description
After any accident, even if the person looks like they are going to stick around and do the right thing, quickly memorize as much of their vehicle as possible. Commit to memory the color, the make and model, and as much of the license plate as possible. If they bolt, then you will have a good lead on them so the police can track them down.
Move to Safety
Many people think that after an accident you have to stay exactly where you are. This isn’t true. In fact, you should move out of the way quickly so you don’t block traffic or cause another wreck. Chances are as soon as the accident occurs, the perpetrator is going to flee, so there is no reason that you need to stick in one place.
Now is not the time to go on a high speed chase through the city!
Look for Witnesses
Hopefully someone will have witnessed the accident, and will still be nearby. Flag them down and get their information so that it won’t be just your word against the hit-and-runner’s word. If possible make a video of them explaining what happened.
Call the Police
In order to process your insurance claim properly, your insurance company will need a police report to go on. You do have up to 24 hours to file the report, but now is a good time to call; especially if you have memorized the details of the offending vehicle. They can put an APB out to patrol units to be on the lookout for the car that hit you.
Write Down Details
While it is still fresh in your mind, write down all of the details of what happened. Include date and time, details about the offender’s vehicle, what direction you were heading and what road you were on. Where they came from, how they hit, and what you did after the wreck. This is a good place to keep witness information nearby as well.
Call Your Insurance Company
There are two ways that you can file a hit and run claim. The easiest is if you have Uninsured Motorist Property Damage (UMPD) coverage. This protects your property in case someone hits you and doesn’t have insurance (likely the case with a hit and run). Alternatively, you may be able to file a claim on the collision coverage of your vehicle. In either situation, you will be out your deductible unless the perpetrator is tracked down. Don’t have full coverage? Then you will almost certainly be stuck paying the bill on your own; especially if the other driver gets away.
Bring Your Damaged Vehicle to Big Sky Collision Center
When all is said and done, drive your vehicle, or have it towed if there is significant damage, to Big Sky Collision Center. We take pride in making sure that every vehicle is restored to full factory safety standards. With more certifications than any other shop in the area, our technicians know exactly how to fix your vehicle the way it is supposed to be fixed. Call us at 406-259-6328 to learn more.