Hit and Run

Sometimes things do not work out the way we hope or plan. What do you do in the face of misfortune or adversity? What do you do when life hands you lemons?

last Tuesday on my way to work, my car was rear ended by another driver. Worse still he/she drove away. It was my first time experiencing anything like this, and  I was beyond confused to say the least. 

I had no idea what to do. So I called my husband. He advised me to hang up and call the police as well as our auto insurance company. After making these 2 calls, I decided to google what exactly happens in a hit and run accident.

If its never happened to you, then I hope you never have to use this information. But who are we kidding? Life happens even to the “luckiest” of us all, and it is definitely better to have the information now, than to be sorry later.

Getting into an auto accident is the worst nightmare for most drivers, and when it happens and the guilty party runs away, it leaves the victim ( the driver/person who was hit) feeling completely helpless ( I know I felt this way on tuesday).

1.  Try to get as much information on the other driver as you possibly can.

In a sane world, when people hit others in traffic, the cars involved safely clear to the right shoulder and then exchange insurance information. Witnesses also stop to give their own sides of the story.  But that did not happen to me. Everyone was trying to get to work, so there was no witness report. The car that hit mine sped away.

 

Now if you are in a position to do so, get as much information about the car that hit yours. Information like the license plate number, color, make and model of the car , gender of the driver, time and location of the accident and few pictures of the damage. You can take pictures using your smartphone. Hitting another vehicle and running away without exchanging insurance information is a federal crime. All the information you gather will help the police catch the culprit.

2. Call the Police

Call the police ASAP. In a hit and run accident where another driver has damaged your vehicle, your insurance company considers it a “not-at-fault” loss. The damage is generally covered under the collision section of your car insurance policy, meaning you will need to pay your collision deductible. However, your insurance company will only cover this cost if they get an official report from the police, to show that it was indeed a hit and run accident.  

 

This coverage is optional and most drivers opt out of it; to reduce their insurance fees. Without this coverage, in the event of a hit and run accident, you will be left to cover the costs yourself. So you need to call the police immediately. A hit and run should not impact  your premium as long as you have reported the incident to the police.

3. Call your auto insurance company

Be prepared to provide as much details of the accident as you can to your insurance company. This allows them to process the claim ASAP. If you have any injuries from the crash that you want to get checked out for, make sure you ask them for your claim number so that all your medical bills will be sent directly to the insurance company. 

I hope you never have to use this information, but if you have found this information helpful, please let me know in the comment section below.

Finally to everyone, Make sure that when you get insurance coverage you read the fine prints. Know exactly what your premium covers. Get more coverage if you can. Unexpected things DO  happen, best to be prepared.

Click on the player below to listen to the full episode about my “terrible tuesday”.

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Tales of an African Princess in America podcast (#TAPApodcast) was created because stories are powerful, and by sharing our stories we can learn and grow together

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