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Happy New Year!

So here we are- the festivities are over and 2013 is upon us! Sadly the poor weather seems to have decided to follow us into the new year…

As I have come back to work after the holidays I have noticed that many of the calls I have received from you have been in relation to accidents involving weather conditions.  A number of you have had accidents on roads due to poor driving conditions over the Christmas and new year break so I thought it might be a good idea to give some guidance on what to do if this has happens to you given that the weather is showing no signs of letting up!.

Of course no one “plans” to have an accident so it is always a good idea to “be prepared” especially if you are going on a long journey.  A spare blanket in the car, a hazard warning sign, some high energy food and drinks might all come in welcome if you are involved in an accident alongside a fully charged mobile phone, a pen and paper and some cash.  Not legal advice of course but just some simple common sense to protect you if you do have an accident.

And if you DO have an accident there are a few sensible steps you should take if you are able to do so.  The first thing of course is to make sure that you and everyone in your vehicle are safe.  They will almost certainly be shaken up and possibly injured.  If so,  medical attention may be needed.  This may mean telephoning the police and ambulance services so be prepared to give an indication as to your location so they can find you.  If you are given a reference number when you speak to the police or ambulance service make a note of this.  If you have  warning triangle put it up if safe to do so to warn other motorists of the accident.

Secondly (again if appropriate to do so)  make a note of  exact location, the registration numbers of the other vehicle/vehicles involved in the accident and the make/model of their vehicles.  If you are able to speak to the other driver/s ask for their names and addresses and their insurance details if available.  If you can,  try and make a note of the damage to the vehicles.  And if there are any witnesses take a note of their contact details too.  If the police attend the scene they will probably gather this information  but it can speed up the investigations I can make for you if you have this too.

If the accident was a relatively minor one and your car is driveable, you may be able to continue your journey.  But if the accident is more serious and your car is undriveable  you may need to wait until your car is towed away.   It is always worthwhile having your own motor insurance  or recovery service  details available so you can call  to see what they can do to help. And if you and/or your passengers have been injured then you may also need to go to hospital for treatment.

In any event TELL whoever may be waiting for you what has happened!

Once you are in a place of safety and have received appropriate medical treatment let your insurers know what has happened (if you have not done so already).

Then it is appropriate to call me to discuss what has happened and whether you need my help.  John and I have been dealing with road accident claims for many years so we know what to do to help you. We can give you sound advice about what to do and talk about your concerns with you. We specialise in claims for injuries and losses following accidents and can guide you through what needs to be done.

At this stage I hope I DON’T hear from you because that means you have had safe journeys!  But if you do need help – you know where to find me.

Until next time and wishing you  safe and happy new year.

Lorraine

Ibbotson Brady Solicitors Limited
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