Road accidents are very stressful and, unfortunately, common. The UK reported over 101,000 accidents in 2021 - around 277 per day.
Regardless of the severity, many of us forget what we should do. So, if you’re involved in a road accident, here are the steps you need to take.
Here are the immediate steps to take after an accident.
If you hit a parked vehicle and can’t leave your details on the windscreen, call 101 (non-emergency policy number) to report the incident. If you don’t and someone else reports you to the police, you may be charged with failing to stop after an accident.
You must report all road accidents to the police within 24 hours. If you don’t, you could be:
You can call 101 to report the accident or complete an online form. You can find out which police force you need to contact on Police.uk.
Contact your insurer from the scene of the accident if possible. If you can’t, you must contact your insurer within a ‘reasonable’ time limit.
Insurer time limits vary, so check your policy book for information. It’s usually within 48 hours of the accident, even if you aren’t planning to make a claim and if you wait for longer, you risk invalidating your claim.
If you need your vehicle repaired, check with your insurer if you need to use an approved garage. If the garage is fixing your car, you may be entitled to a courtesy vehicle, depending on your cover level.
If the accident happens outside our opening hours, and your vehicle isn't driveable, call the 24-hour Accident Recovery Helpline. Our team will collect and store your car until we've completed our damage assessment.
You can find our opening times and emergency contact numbers on our claims page.
Don’t worry about having your policy number to hand. We can access your policy details with your registration number.
Insurers will ask for the information you collected at the accident if you make a claim.
Once your insurer has assessed your information, they may ask for more evidence. It may take a while as deciding liability is complex.
If you have Admiral Insurance, read our car or van insurance claim guide.
Read more about what happens if someone claims against your car insurance.