Being able to identify a staged accident could save you from unnecessary insurance claims
Most people who take to the road have the best interest of others in mind, but unfortunately not everyone is an honest driver. Some malicious drivers will take any chance they see for personal advancement, even at the expense of others.
The most common instance of staged accidents occurs when a driver with a preexisting car problem or health condition intentionally wrecks in order to collect money from another driver’s insurance company. The best way to avoid putting your hard-earned money in the pockets of people like this is to be aware of the signs of a staged accident.
Here are a few tips to prevent and identify staged accidents:
Contact Authorities Immediately
From major crashes to the smallest fender benders, the first priority after any accident should be ensuring that help is on the way. Alerting authorities as soon as a mishap occurs keeps everyone as safe as possible and helps to build the most accurate accident report.
Be Aware of Red Flags
Any driver who tries to persuade you not to contact the police or your insurance company about an accident probably has their own best interest in mind. Unreliable witnesses, suspicious circumstances regarding the collision and inaccurate accounts of the incident from the other driver could all be signs of a staged wreck.
Collect Photographic Evidence
As soon as it is safe to do so, you should take photos of the wreck using your cell phone or a disposable camera. These photos can prove to be a valuable resource for both the authorities and your insurance provider while they are reviewing your claim.
Always leave at least one car length between you and the car in front of you. One of the easiest opportunities for staged accidents is to slam on brakes when a car is following closely.
Protect Your Identity
Be cautious about the amount of information you exchange with other drivers following an accident. Drivers should exchange their personal information (names, addresses and phone numbers), vehicle information (make, model and license plate number) and insurance information (provider name and policy number). If passengers are present, their names and contact information should be collected as well. Be sure to never provide another driver with any information that they are unwilling to share with you as this could be a ploy for identity fraud.
The best way of staying safe on the road and protecting your identity is avoiding unnecessary accidents. Keeping your loved ones safe and your insurance premiums low is made easier by being informed about the signs of staged accidents.