Road trips are nearly as American as baseball and pumpkin pie, with 73 percent of Americans planning to take a road trip during summer 2019. “Planned” is the operative word here, as a significant portion of these trips never occurred due to unforeseen circumstances.
Improper planning aside, the foremost circumstance that can derail a road trip is car trouble. There’s no road trip without a vehicle that can propel a person along the road, so keeping this transportation device in top shape should be a high priority for prospective road trippers. Of course, regularly maintenance cannot completely prevent road troubles, particularly accidents, but even these can be prepared for. Proper preparation can ensure that even a major accident will not end your trip.
The majority of car crashes cause only minor damage to the vehicles and no damage to the passengers. In cases like these where the damage is nonexistent or negligible, exchanging information with the driver is all one needs to do for the time being. If necessary, a claim can be filed afterward, but if the vehicle is in good working order, the road trip can continue as planned. It should go without saying that the vehicle should be insured if it is to be used on a road trip – or for any sort of driving. However, traffic laws and insurance protocols vary from state to state. For this reason, accidents can prove more complicated if they happen in a state that the driver is not familiar with, particularly if the accident is more severe than a minor fender bender. In such cases, it may be in the road tripper’s best interest to call an insurance agent or hire a car accident attorney, who can help you make educated choices about your case.
An accident that results in significant damage to the vehicle(s) needs to be assessed by either a police officer, a claims adjuster, an accident lawyer, or all three. Police should be called to the scene if the damage is severe, and paramedics should accompany them if there are injuries. Police will file a report that can later be used by a claims adjuster or lawyer. Once the logistics are dealt with, the vehicle needs to be removed from the scene. If totaled, it will be towed to a junkyard, which means that you’ll have to arrange for other transportation and wait for the claim to be finalized. In effect, the road trip will be over. If the vehicle needs repairs, it can be towed or driven to a local autobody shop, where it might be fixed within a few hours. Your road trip will only need a recess, and depending on the state’s laws, your insurance coverage, the cause of the accident, and whether you hired a car accident lawyer, you may return home with some extra money.
Car accidents happen, and unfortunately they can happen during a road trip. In this worst case scenario, a road trip doesn’t have to end as long as the driver follows proper procedure. Keep in mind that procedure varies from state to state, so a road tripper may wish to consult a claims adjuster or lawyer for advice or representation after an out-of-state accident.