Collecting Information First Leads to Easier Claim Settlements
Freightwaves.com’s Chad Prevost posted an article in May of this year on the topic of documenting and reporting accidents appropriately in order to quicken the claims process, and the information is still as relevant as ever.
Trucking has taken up a good portion of the transportation industry’s attention recently, therefore it is only fitting that Prevost’s article is geared toward the system of claims reporting for truck drivers. He mentions that since there tend to be police reports of trucking accidents, drivers themselves are not as vigilant as they should be when it comes to recording the details of the mishap. This is an error that can cost time and money down the road. Prevost writes that “as many as 30% of all truck accidents are never reported by truck drivers.” Why? Some think it is too embarrassing and that the accident will fade into the background and be forgotten if they keep quiet. The lack of reporting also exists because truckers simply are not trained what to do in the case of an accident.
Here is what he recommends:
For starters, make sure that each driver has an accident report form with them at all times when on the job. They also need to be properly informed on how to fill out the necessary sections. An accident is just what it sounds like: unexpected and unnerving, so the driver should first take a moment to reorient themself and ensure that their logical brain takes the lead in order to gather the necessary information from the other party. This information includes the “date, time, and specific location of the occurrence”, along with the licence plate numbers and descriptions of the other vehicles involved, which should be written on the driver’s accident report form. The exchange of personal contact information should be done before the police arrive. Prevost also stresses the fact that no discussion of who is at fault should occur initially, since it will hinder the information gather and exchange process and make for a more difficult process later on. Lastly, the driver should record “an honest description of what occurred along with a clear diagram of the incident” in order to clarify what happened to keep for records.
If you follow the steps recommended here, it can not only save time but money as well. Claims that are accurate, descriptive, and prompt will most likely have a lower settling price than ones that are not treated with a careful eye and detailed reporting. A few minutes used wisely the moments following a trucking accident are important in the future of claims.
Read the full article here: