Five actions to take following a car accident

Being involved in a road traffic accident can be a traumatic experience. It can happen in a split second and be a real shock to the system.

Woman on a mobile phone

The most important thing is to make sure everyone is safe and to check if there are any injuries. It can all be a bit of a blur, so we've put together a checklist of things to consider and actions to take.

Your five-point checklist

1. Stay calm and make sure everyone is safe. Don’t admit blame or apologise.

2. Call 999 for an ambulance if there are any injuries. Call 101 for the Police if the other driver leaves without giving details.

3. Make a note of the other driver’s details and any witnesses at the scene. Check the list below for the types of detail we mean. If possible, take pictures of the cars, drivers, passengers, damage and the accident scene from several angles.

4. Report the incident to us on 0300 037 3737 as soon as possible. Lines are open 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday, 8am to 4pm Saturday. If it is outside of these hours, make sure you report the incident when the lines are next open.

5. If you are unable to drive your car, call the RAC on 0800 731 1173 or 0333 202 1878 for roadside support. They are available to help 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you are in the Republic of Ireland, the number to call is 1800 535 005.

Information about the accident

Make a note of the following details while you are still at the scene. If you can't get all this information, try and get as much as you can. It will help the claims process further down the line.

Other driver’s details:

  • Full name
  • Phone number (home/mobile)
  • Email address
  • Details of passengers in their vehicle
  • Date, time and location of the accident
  • Vehicle make, model and colour
  • Vehicle registration number
  • Their insurer’s name
  • Their insurance policy number
  • Police officer and police station (if applicable)

Witness’ details:

  • Full name
  • Phone number (home/mobile)
  • Email address
  • Address

This handy guide (PDF) can be kept in your car for future reference in the event of an accident. It will help to make sure you don't miss anything.

Report the accident

When you are ready, let us know about the accident. You can call us on 0300 037 3737 or if there are no injuries, you can use our online form (opens in new window).

For more information check our guidance on making a claim.

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