-- TD Insurance poll finds less than one-third of Canadians know exact
steps to take after an auto accident --
TORONTO, Sept. 4, 2013 /CNW/ - As Canadians rush back to work and
school, there will be an influx of vehicles on the road. But before
putting the key in the ignition, are drivers educating themselves on
the steps to take if they're involved in a fender bender? A recent poll
from TD Insurance reveals that although nine-in-ten Canadians (89%) are
somewhat or extremely likely to know what to do following an auto
accident, only 31% know the exact steps to take. In a real-life
situation, would drivers be prepared to deal with an accident as safely
and efficiently as possible? How these situations are handled could
lead to negative financial consequences.
"Fender benders resulting from drivers making sudden stops in
intersections, or pulling out of a parking spot without checking first
happen every day, so it's important to be prepared and know what steps
to take afterwards," says Dave Minor, a vice president at TD Insurance.
"The actions you take after a minor accident can affect your insurance
coverage, so be sure to review the steps with your insurance provider
when you renew your policy each year."
Dave Minor offers the following tips to drivers:
Keep calm - Being in an accident is stressful; try not to panic or make rash
decisions. When speaking with the other party involved, don't accept
money or admit fault for the collision, and don't agree to just "forget
about it." Most drivers (87%) know that if they're in an accident,
under no circumstances should they accept money or accept fault, as
this can affect the coverage their insurance company will provide for
"Whether you're a seasoned or brand new driver, you can never be too
prepared during an emergency," said Minor. "It's a good idea to have an
emergency kit handy, include items such as a first aid kit, road flares
and a flashlight with extra batteries."
Safety first - Check to make sure everyone involved is safe. If anyone is injured, do
not move them, doing so could worsen their injuries. If you're able to
safely move your vehicle out of the flow of traffic, while protecting
it from further damage, do so. More than half of drivers (51%)
incorrectly believe that if they are in an accident, they should never
move their vehicle from the road before the police arrive, or they will
not be able to determine who was at fault. This isn't always the case.
"Your number one priority after getting into an accident is making sure
everyone in the vehicle is safe," says Minor. "Once you've established
the safety of the passengers, take steps to protect everyone from any
additional damage by moving your vehicle out of traffic."
Call the police - Call 911 to report the accident if anyone is injured, if you believe
that there is major damage to your vehicle, or if you think a criminal
act may have been committed. For non-emergency related collisions where
no one is injured or there is only minor damage (less than $1,000) to
your vehicle, it might also be a good idea to call the police. They
might direct you to your provincial collision reporting centre.
Take notes - Include details of the accident and identification of the vehicles and
people involved, including emergency personnel or witnesses on scene.
If possible, take pictures or video, and/or draw a diagram of the
accident scene to assist with documentation of a claim. Keep a notepad,
pencil, and a checklist of things to do after a collision in your glove
compartment, just in case.
Call your insurer - Three in ten drivers (28%) incorrectly believe that if they are in an
auto accident, they only need to report the incident to their insurance
provider if their car has sustained significant damage. Most insurance
policies require you to report any accident involving loss or damage to
people or property. If you don't report an accident, it may affect your
coverage down the road. If another driver involved reports the
accident, their insurance company may contact your insurance provider,
which could lead to cancellation or non-renewal of your policy if you
have not reported the accident yourself.
"Contact your insurance provider as soon as possible to inform them of
the accident, not only to cover yourself and your car, but for help
with how to handle the situation," says Minor. "Your insurance provider
can confirm all of the information you should be collecting from the
other party. They can also offer a list of recommended repair shops in
your area that can help with getting your vehicle back in shape even
faster. Review your policy before repairs are made to make sure you
understand the limitations of your coverage."
Visit the TD Insurance Learning Centre for more information about auto insurance.
About the TD Insurance Survey
TD Insurance commissioned Environics Research Group to conduct an online
custom survey of 2,466 Canadians aged 18 and older, who have driven in
the past 12 months. Responses were collected from February 7 to 18,
About TD Insurance
TD Insurance offers a wide range of products to help protect clients
from the 'accidents of life' including credit protection, auto, home,
health, life, and travel insurance. With more than 3 million clients,
TD Insurance authorized products and services are available through a
network of more than 1,150 TD Canada Trust branches, the Internet and
telephone. For more information, visit www.tdinsurance.com
Image with caption: "Find yourself in a fender bender? What to do after an accident (CNW Group/TD Insurance)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130904_C4000_PHOTO_EN_30356.jpg
SOURCE: TD Insurance
For further information:
Caitie Wallman / Jessica Squibb
Paradigm Public Relations
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TD Bank Group