Prepare Ahead to Prevent the Panic

While on your much-anticipated family vacation, you decide to take everyone to a top-rated mini golf course you’ve heard so much about when you notice you’ve missed your turn.  As you quickly try to figure out where you’re going, you fail to realize that the road ahead goes from four lanes down to two. Before you know it, traffic comes to a complete stop, except for you. Now what?  You’re six hours away from home, your car is disabled, and you’re not sure what to do or where to go.  Fortunately, there are answers to these questions, but it may take some planning on your part to make this scenario less stressful.

Before you leave home, you should complete a risk assessment to be sure you can answer the following questions: What would you do if your vehicle was involved in an accident and you were unable to drive it?  Would you rent a vehicle? Would you have the vehicle repaired locally, or transported back home? If my vehicle became disabled, who would transport it to a repair facility? These questions and several others cause a great deal of stress and even panic after an accident.

It’s important to look at the details of your automobile policy coverage.  If you have rental coverage, you may find that your policy limits your daily rental amount.  In most cases, this may not be a problem. However, if you were traveling in a minivan and your policy only pays for a four-door sedan, you may be facing a difficult financial situation.  You’ll also want to verify what is covered if you would need to tow your car. There are many options you may not be aware of when it comes to towing your vehicle. For example, most manufacturers offer roadside assistance if your vehicle is under warranty. You may have roadside assistance through a third-party or your auto policies may provide you with roadside assistance. Don’t forget to have the number to call in case of an emergency and add it to your cell phone’s contact list. It’s also a good idea to familiarize yourself with any limitation that may come in to play in case of a disablement. For example, towing your vehicle 50 miles to a repair facility is reasonable; towing your vehicle 285 miles would be neither reasonable nor customary. Fees for the additional miles may be your responsibility.

Accidents happen, but you don’t have to let it ruin your vacation. With careful planning, you can be better equipped to move forward should an incident occur. Check out the brochure “What To Do After A Car Accident” for a step-by-step breakdown of what to do after an accident.

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