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Despite how careful you are while driving on North Carolina’s roads, there is no accounting for other drivers’ behavior. Would you know what to do if someone were to clip your car at a red light and keep driving? What if you were to come out to your car and find it damaged without a note on the windshield?

Learn how to handle hit-and-run accidents before they happen. Panic in the heat of the moment can get to you, causing you to skip a few critical steps that can help you recover.

First steps 

If someone strikes your car without stopping to exchange contact or insurance information, here are steps to take.

  • The first thing you need to do is call the paramedics if you or anyone in your vehicle sustained an injury.
  • While waiting, do your best to recall and note any details that you remember about the other car, such as the make, model, license plate color and the direction in which it drove off. See if any witnesses can provide supplementary information.
  • Next, take pictures of the damage from various angles.
  • Just like you would with almost any other type of car accident, contact law enforcement so that they can file a report, which becomes instrumental if you decide to file an insurance claim. What is unique about hit-and-run accidents is they are a crime.

Another reason to involve the police with this type of accident is so that your insurance provider does not fault you for the incident, which could negatively impact your future premiums.

What happens with insurance?

Expect to have to pay a deductible before your insurance carrier starts repairing your vehicle. That said, your insurance carrier may waive the deductible because you were in a hit-and-run accident. Look over your policy to find out, or ask your insurance agent. You may also want to ask if you can expect a premium increase as a result of the accident.

Keep your wits about you in the aftermath of a hit-and-run accident. Knowing what to do can save your time, your money and your sanity.