Recently in Staten Island NY and many metro areas the police have started a new pilot program where police will not longer come to the scene of an accident if (1) The vehicles are able to be moved. (2) No person was hurt. (3) All vehicle owners are present.
Some things you should do to protect yourself if you are unable to have police respond to the accident scene are as follows.
- Both drivers must exchange drivers licence, insurance info and vehicle registration at the scene under state law. Snap a photo of the other driver’s plate number (plate number will help you get their insurance information later.) and person right away. In case the other driver try’s to leave. Leaving the scene without exchanging information may be illegal under state law.
- Immediately snap photos of the entire scene. Stand 20 yards away so you can photograph all street signs, corners, intersections and record exactly how the accident happened. This will help you to record an accurate account of what happened. It will also help protect you if other driver try’s to change their story later. Stay safe and don’t get hit by a car while you do this.
- If possible record on your smart phone other driver saying what happened in accident. Recording how auto collision accident happened.
- Write down telephone number from other driver.
- If a tow truck driver shows up at the scene with out you calling him. Don’t buy his bullshit. He is most likely a chase truck driver a.k.a ambulance chaser. Do not sign anything. And know he most likely is getting a 15% commission for bringing your car to whatever auto body repair facility he is trying to coerce you to bring your collision damaged vehicle to. If they con you to bring your car there you may be in for a rude surprise when they hold your vehicle hostage. Or if they repair your vehicle horribly.
- I would never recommend admitting fault at the scene of the collision accident. You may be nervous and not thinking clearly.
- Before you call your insurance company or agent. Go to a collision repair facility that you trust. Ask for personal recommendations. Be suspicious for asking for recommendations from insurance companies or insurance agents. Agents many times get 10% commissions from auto body shops for sending your car there. Insurance companies obviously will do whatever they can to cut costs at your expense. Sometimes even causing your collision damaged vehicle to have garbage aftermarket counterfeit or used junk yard parts on it. Which can make your car unsafe to drive after the accident.
I am not a lawyer. I am only giving you common problems I see from the customers who come into my auto body repair facility.
Barry’s Auto Body and Collision repair.