Automobile accidents happen every minute of the day. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 5 million wrecks occur every year. However, according to a July 2012 survey from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), many Americans do not know what steps to take or basic information to share—or not share—after an accident. They may even put their identities and safety at risk by sharing too much personal information. The new WreckCheck mobile application from the NAIC can help eliminate that risk.
The recent NAIC survey revealed consumers were unsure about auto accident best practices, such as when to call the police or what personal information to exchange with the other driver after an accident. Consumers generally need only share their names and correct vehicle insurance information, which should include the phone numbers of insurance providers. Sharing additional personal information, such as driver’s license numbers and home addresses, puts consumers, their property, and their safety at risk.
“The last thing you’re probably thinking about following a car accident is protecting your privacy,” says NAIC President and Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin M. McCarty. “Understanding what information to share, and with whom, will help keep you safe after an accident and decrease some of the challenges of filing a claim later on.”
The new WreckCheck mobile application from the NAIC outlines what to do immediately following an auto accident and takes users through a step-by-step process to create their own accident report. It also provides tips for staying calm, safe, and smart on the road, and makes it easy to capture photos and document the necessary information to file an insurance claim. Additionally, the app lets users email a completed accident report directly to themselves and their insurance agents. The app is free and available for both iPhone and Android smartphone users.
Drivers can visit InsureUOnline.org for additional information about what to do following an auto accident. Also available on the site is a downloadable accident checklist, a video demo, an audio interview (NAIC President and Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin M. McCarty Discusses WreckCheck Mobile App) and other materials to help consumers protect themselves after an accident.