What to do when you have a car accident

What to do when you have a car accident

A car accident is one of the worst things you can experience on the road. Yet unlike with many shocking and traumatic events, there’s a to-do list immediately following a car accident that’s sensible to follow. 

“Being involved in a car incident is something most of us put to the back of our minds,” said Chris Barella of Euro Car Parts, which carried out research into the best things to do following a car accident.

“However, they unfortunately do happen and feeling prepared for this will help to keep yourself and others around you as calm as possible, and allow you to focus on the urgent priorities and necessary steps you need to take following a collision.”

Here’s what to do when you have a car accident.

Always stop

What to do when you have a car accident

This is obvious, and heads the list. Not stopping your car after a collision is, in fact, illegal. You could wind up with a six-month prison sentence or a £5,000 fine if you don’t pull over.

Stop the car and turn off the engine, given the car could be unsafe to drive, but switch the hazard lights on. If you have a warning triangle, set it out on the side of the incident that has cars approaching.

Check the people involved

It’s a courtesy as much as a necessity, but speak to everyone involved and check they’re OK.

You’ll also want to get an impression of the other driver, if there is one. Assess whether they may be under the influence of drink or drugs.

Call the relevant services if they’re needed, be they police or medical, and don’t be afraid to flag down help.

Assess the damage

What to do when you have a car accident

Once you’ve done what you need to do with people, check over the cars. Make a note of exactly what the damage is, both outside and in.

You’ll also want to check whether any personal items, including clothes, have been affected by the incident. Detail what you think is damaged, and take photos

Note down details on the other car, too: make, model, registration number and colour. Also take down the location, weather conditions and time of the incident.

Exchange details

What to do when you have a car crash

Swap contact, address and insurance details with the other driver involved. Note down passengers, the names of everyone involved, witnesses and the ID numbers of the emergency services on the scene.

This is why it’s a good idea to keep a notepad in your car, though the notes function on your phone will do the job.

Tell your insurer about the accident

What to do when you have a car accident

As soon as is convenient, preferably at the scene, let your insurer know what’s happened. You don’t have to go through it all in the moment, just let them know. You can make further contact later. Be sure to have your insurance documents to hand for the full breakdown of the incident.

If you’re outside your insurance company’s operational hours, you should be able to call an accident recovery line for assistance.


Drivers most likely to crash driving home from work


You’re more likely to have an accident on the way home from work than at any other time of the week. That’s according to ClickMechanic, which has analysed figures released by the Department for Transport (DfT).

A perfect storm of more cars on the road and commuters rushing home from work means that the number of car accidents hits a peak between 5pm and 6pm on weekdays. The DfT figures show that 7,150 accidents occurred during this unhappy hour in 2016.

Unsurprisingly, the school run is another contributing factor to the likelihood of having a prang, with 4-5pm (6,612 accidents) and 8-9am (6,024) the other high points during the week.

The likelihood of an accident tumbles at the weekend, especially in the morning, as most incidents tend to occur between 11am and 6pm on Saturday and Sunday. The peak times tend to coincide with shop closing times and sporting events.

Strangely, there appears to be no correlation between the time of year and the chances of an accident. There’s a slight increase in the number of crashes during the winter months (9,276 in January and 9,200 in November), but August produced the second-highest number (9,249 accidents).

Andrew Jervis, co-founder of ClickMechanic, said: “We must take care and stay alert as we drive, particularly during the peak travelling times as there is more traffic and a higher chance of an incident occurring.

“The fact that drivers are having more accidents in the evenings implies that they are tired after a day’s work and are perhaps eager to get home, resulting in them being more careless on the roads.

“With the winter months and the shorter days coming up, all UK drivers must ensure that they make every effort to drive safely and take their time during their commutes.”

>NEXT: Driving to work ‘more depressing than using bus or train’

Rimac claims Richard Hammond crash car ‘flew 300 metres’

Richard Hammond Rimac crashRimac Automobili founder and CEO, Mate Rimac, has issued a statement following the crash involving Richard Hammond earlier this month. Hammond was competing in the Hemburg Hill Climb event in Switzerland when the electric hypercar left the road and subsequently burst into flames.

Following widespread speculation as to the cause of the accident – and in the absence of any detailed information from Richard Hammond or the producers of The Grand Tour – Rimac has leapt to the defence of the Concept One, as reported by the website, Vidi Auto.

‘Tumbled from a 100m height’

Richard Hammond Rimac crash

Responding to claims that the Concept One was involved in a low-speed crash, Rimac said: “Turned to grass? Driving 66km/h?” before continuing:

“The car flew 300 meters (sic) horizontally and tumbled from a 100m height. After the first flight it fell on asphalt road 10m below the place where the first started. I am not able to tell at which speed it was driven, but I cannot believe what nonsense has been written by people who have no idea, or are blind, or just mischievous.”

This is the first time Rimac or his company have spoken about the crash since issuing a statement immediately after the incident, wishing Richard “a quick recovery.”

Hammond himself posted an update via the DriveTribes website saying he hopes to be “back in action soon.” The accident is likely to delay filming of the second series of The Grand Tour, but there’s no word on whether Amazon will postpone the date of the series premiere in October.

‘Wouldn’t have happened to a real pro’

Some are pointing the finger at Hammond for causing the crash, including the winner of the race in which The Grand Tour presenters were competing. Speaking to The Sun, Swiss driver, Marcel Steiner, said the crash “wouldn’t have happened to a real pro”.

Concerns were also raised by Auto Sport Switzerland director, Patrick Falk, who questioned whether serious preparation was made ahead of the hill climb.

Falk said: “Since Hammond did not participate in the official race but in the show part, we do not have access to him or his car.

“Normally, professional racers take the route the day before with this bike and deal with conditions on the spot. We doubt Hammond had time for this.”

The latest Rimac Concept One produces 1,224hp and 1,180lb ft of torque, and is capable of reaching some truly remarkable speeds. The headline figures are a 0-62mph time of 2.5 seconds and a top speed of 221mph.

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Rimac Concept One: The 221mph electric hypercar Hammond crashed

Rimac Concept OneSince Rimac Automobili burst onto the scene at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2011, world records have been broken, eyebrows have been raised and boundaries have been pushed. And yet, the Croatian company and its Concept One electric hypercar were relatively unknown beyond the confines of the automotive world.

That’s until Saturday 10 June 2017, when Richard Hammond crashed a Concept One during filming for the next season of The Grand Tour. The crash – which took place at the Hemberg Hill Climb in Switzerland – left Hammond with a fractured knee and the car destroyed by fire.

All of a sudden, social media was alight with news about the crash and the Rimac name was thrust into the headlines. We use the word ‘thrust’ with caution, given Hammond’s 2006 crash in jet-powered dragster. But what exactly is the Concept One and why should you care?

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Mate Rimac and his BMW E30Rimac Concept One: the story so far

First, a little history. Rimac Automobili is led by 29-year-old Mate Rimac, a Croatian with “a dream that became a reality”. His entry in Forbe’s ‘30 Under 30 Europe’ describes “a company that’s cooler than Tesla”, building “fast and exciting” electric cars.

In 2015, Politico named Mate Rimac as one of the 28 most influential people in the EU – not bad for a man who simply had “a dream that became a reality”. A dream that started with a BMW E30.

The so-called e-M3 was Rimac Automobili’s first test mule – a car Mate Rimac started to convert when he was just 19-years-old. “I owned an old BMW E30 which I used for drift and circuit races,” said Rimac.

“At one of these races, the gas engine blew up. Then I decided to try building an EV. After one year or so the car was able to drive but I was not satisfied with the result. It was heavy, not very powerful and the range was limited.”

He gathered a team of experts to develop his own in-house components, hellbent on taking the idea of an electric racecar to the next level. Today, the same BMW E30 holds five FIA and Guinness World Records, including the fastest ⅛-mile by an electric car.

A seriously rapid E30 is great for social media ‘likes’ and buzz, but it’s not enough to attract investment and it certainly won’t upset the supercar elite. If you thought establishing a new company was tough, try doing it in a former East European country where capitalism remains a dirty word and funding is hard to secure.

But it’s thanks to the Concept One (more on this in a moment), that investment started to flood in. Rimac was encouraged to move production to Abu Dhabi, but the Croat stayed loyal to his home nation, where he employs more than 250 people at a factory on the outskirts of Zagreb.

To think that Mate Rimac felt under pressure to grow a beard in order to make him appear older. In 2016, he told a Croatian TV channel that “when you’re a young entrepreneur you face some difficulty when it comes to your age.

“Being young is not an advantage here, hence the beard. It makes me appear older,” he confessed. Something to think about if you’re preparing a presentation for the next series of Dragons’ Den.

Rimac Concept One

Motor Shows, especially those the size of Frankfurt, are littered with new and exciting concepts, many of which will never see the light of day, so you can understand the level of scepticism surrounding the unveiling of the Rimac Concept Car in 2011.

Croatia isn’t exactly famed for being an automotive powerhouse, so news of a young upstart arriving in Germany accompanied by tales of delivering the world’s first electric supercar failed to grab the headlines. Indeed, Rimac Automobili was relegated to a stand at the back of one of the supplier halls.

The Concept One looked stunning, boasting a carbonfibre body designed by Adriano Mudri and an interior penned by a team of former Pininfarina employees. That the production version looks remarkably similar to the show car should come as no surprise: it looked production-ready, even in 2011.

But it was the technology beneath the skin that really mattered. Rimac Automobili developed a unique powertrain using four electric motors with their own single-speed gearboxes, one driving each wheel, delivering a combined output of 1,088hp.

At the time, this was enough to achieve a 0-62mph time of 2.8 seconds, a top speed of 190mph and a claimed range of 373 miles, assuming you could resist the temptation to test the eye-popping performance figures.

Concept One: the world tourRimac Concept One: the story so far

Development continued in 2012, as the Concept One embarked on an electric-powered world tour. First came the super-posh Top Marques Monaco, followed by an appearance at the equally lavish Concorso d’Eleganza at Villa D’Este.

In June 2012, the Concept One took part in a parade at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where it was selected as the most innovative of all supercars, beating the likes of the Bugatti Veyron, Pagani Zonda, Koenigsegg Agera R and Lamborghini Aventador.

Further events followed, including a UK debut at Salon Privé in September 2012 and, in 2014, news that Rimac would supply a Concept One to the Formula E Championship for use by the Race Director and for passenger laps.

Concept becomes a reality

Until the 2016 Geneva Motor Show, the Concept One was still just that: a concept. But five years on from its motor show debut, Rimac demonstrated that it had staying power and that the Concept One was a car to be taken seriously. In Geneva, the electric supercar was given pride of place within one of the main halls – no supplier section this time.

The styling was largely unchanged, but the technology had been refined to make it even quicker than the 2011 version. The headline figures were compelling: a 0-62mph time a fraction quicker at 2.6 seconds and a top speed of 221mph. Serious credentials, then, but to concentrate on the numbers would be to miss the technical brilliance of the Concept One.Rimac Concept One: the story so far

Let’s not forget that almost every component on the electric supercar has been developed in-house by the Rimac team in Zagreb. The CEO’s claim that “the Concept One achieves today what many would think is unachievable, even in the future” is not without justification.

Take the Rimac All Wheel Torque Vectoring (R-AWTV), which uses input from sensors positioned around the chassis and suspension to calculate the optimal torque distribution between the wheels. It means that the Concept One is able to use every last bit of its 1,180lb ft of torque.

The R-AWTV settings can be tweaked via Rimac’s own infotainment system, which also controls the brake force and torque distribution. Users can change the nature of the Concept One, from a neutral setting through to a track-focused and even a drift mode.

The Rimac infotainment system gathers info from more than 500 different sensors, with data stored in the internal memory and sent to the cloud via 4G. It can be analysed during or after a lap via the touchscreen, PC or smartphone.Rimac Concept One: the story so far

“My goal was not to create an electric version of existing supercars. I wanted to create technology to make the supercar considerably better in every regard – faster, more fun and more efficient. I wanted to make the supercar of the 21st century,” said Mate Rimac.

If Rimac is to be believed, the next generation supercar requires a battery pack designed to deliver 1000kw or 1MW of power during acceleration and to absorb 400kW during braking. A liquid thermal management and low-resistance conducting system was required to master this challenge. Total range of the production version: 330km (205 miles).

As you’d imagine, with four motors, four gearboxes and the array of battery tech, the Rimac Concept One is hardly light. At 1,850kg it’s around 600kg heavier than a LaFerrari and 400kg lardier than a McLaren P1. On the plus side, it’s 145kg lighter than the Bugatti Chiron…

By the time the production version was unveiled in Geneva, Rimac had sold six of the planned eight units. The Croatian firm had done enough to convince wealthy supercar owners that it was the real deal.

Rimac Concept S

But Rimac wasn’t in a mood to stand still. The Concept S is the Concept One’s so-called “Evil Twin”, built to exploit the maximum potential of the torque vectoring system. With 1,384hp and 1,328lb ft of torque, the Concept S is even more hardcore than the hardly soft Concept One.

The 0-62mph time drops to 2.5 seconds, while the 0-124mph (200km/h) figure stands at 5.6 seconds, making it faster than the Bugatti Chiron. The 0-186mph (300km/h) time is an equally impressive Chiron-taming 13.1 seconds.

It helps that the Concept S is 50kg lighter than the Concept One, but the new version is also blessed with an aggressive aerodynamic package, enhancing downforce by 34%. The torque vectoring system has been tweaked to provide a “wide spectrum of extreme setups”.

Rimac Concept One upgradesRimac Concept One: the story so far

Not to be outdone, a new and improved Rimac Concept One was unveiled at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show. With power increased to 1,224hp, the new version will sprint to 62mph in 2.5 seconds, before hitting the 186mph mark in 14 seconds.

At the same time, the battery capacity was upgraded to 90kWh, with a total range of 350km (217 miles).

“Hundreds of upgrades to almost all vehicle systems were necessary to unleash the Concept One’s full potential.” said Mate Rimac. “Our goal remains to deliver ground-breaking technology demonstrated in our hypercars to like-minded individuals around the world while at the same time being a recognised partner to the global OEMs.”

An example of this includes the battery system supplied for the Aston Martin AM-RB 001, and partnerships with the likes of Koenigsegg, Qoros and W Motors.

From e-Bikes to top-secret prototype cars, Rimac has come a long way since its CEO decided to go hunting petrol-powered cars in a green BMW. Thanks to Richard Hammond, the company is more famous than ever.

The cars most likely to be written off

The cars most likely to be written offThe percentage of vehicles checked with at least one serious warning against them increased from 25.6% in 2015 to 28.5% in 2016. That’s the warning from used vehicle checker, which has released write-off, finance and stolen risk data for its 10 most searched-for makes.

The most common serious risk, write-off, increased from 29% of all warnings in 2015 to 33.6% last year. It pays to approach with caution when buying a used car as doing a little pre-purchase research will reduce the risk of buying a pup. The question is: what cars are most likely to be written off?

10. BMW: 17.88The cars most likely to be written off

There are four write-off categories, ranked in order of serious. In summary, these are: Category A – scrap only; Category B – car to be crushed, but parts can be salvaged; Category C – vehicle repairable but costs exceed market value; Category D – vehicle repairable, but repair costs are significant.

Taking this into consideration, a car declared a Category C or D write-off needn’t be a risky purchase, you simply need to do your homework.

9. MINI: 18.28%The cars most likely to be written off

It’s also worth bearing in mind that a Category C or D car will be worth less on the used car market. This should play a part in your negotiations.

MINI finished 9th with 18.28% of vehicles checked returning a write-off warning.

8. Renault: 18.59%The cars most likely to be written off

In June 2001, the Renault Laguna became the first car to be awarded a five-star Euro NCAP rating for occupant protection.

According to, 18.59% of all Renault vehicles checked returned a write-off warning.

7. Nissan: 18.61%The cars most likely to be written off

If you want to keep a car declared as a Category C or D write-off, the insurance company will provide a payout and then sell the vehicle back to you. You must send the complete log book back to your insurance company before applying for a duplicate log book using a V62 form.

Around 18.6% of Nissan vehicles checked returned a write-off warning, according to the figures.

6. SEAT: 18.69%The cars most likely to be written off

Meanwhile, SEAT finished 6th with 18.69% of vehicles checked returning a write-off warning.

5. Peugeot: 18.81%The cars most likely to be written off

In September 2016, the Peugeot 208 Active was revealed to be the most written-off car in the UK, based on data collected between January and June 2016.

Nearly half of all 208 Active models checked were previously written off. Across the entire year, Peugeot finished fifth.

4. Suzuki: 19.09%The cars most likely to be written off

Roger Powell said: “Any previously written off vehicle must be viewed with caution, especially when inspecting the quality of repairs.

“The implications of being involved in a further accident in a car which has not been properly repaired don’t bear thinking about.”

3. Ford: 19.21%The cars most likely to be written off

Powell continued: “In a survey a couple of years ago, 79% of customers said they wouldn’t buy one.

“The flipside is that some buyers are happy to look at Category C or D write-offs and use the data to push for a price reduction.”

2. Vauxhall: 19.99%The cars most likely to be written off

In a previous survey, three of the vehicles in the top 10 had a Vauxhall badge. More specifically, the Corsa Limited Edition, Corsa SRi and Corsa SXi.

Vauxhall finished second in the table of the most searched-for makes.

1. Honda: 21.65%The cars most likely to be written off

For the second year running, Honda was the worst for written-off cars, with 21.65% of all vehicles checked returning a warning.

If in doubt, get a used car check. If you’re still in doubt, walk away and look at something else. There are plenty more cars in the classifieds.

Crash for cash: leaders of £1.1m car crash scam jailed

An elaborate ‘crash for cash’ scam in south-east England has been foiled by the Metropolitan Police. The fraud involved 19 people, including a company boss, and generated £1.1m in fake personal injury claims.

The criminals staged deliberate collisions with innocent drivers so they could then sue for injuries. Mohammed Zubair Jamil masterminded the scheme, processing false insurance claims through his accident management company, based in Hertfordshire.

The Met Police estimates that, in total, Mr Jamil and his accomplices have caused around 300 car crashes.

Telematics data used to catch fraudsters

The gang were caught after a telematics box  installed in the ‘lead’ car provided data on a fake crash. The data was analysed by fraud investigation experts, APU Ltd, who concluded the crash must have been intentional.

Neil Thomas, director of investigative services at APU Ltd, said: “We have been hard on the heels of crash for cash fraudsters for years now. The depth of data available via cutting edge telematics systems necessitates a scientific approach to interpret crucial information into meaningful evidence, then it needs to be presented in court so that the layman can understand it.

“This particular criminal network caused hundreds of fake accidents, all of which were planned, but any of which could have gone badly wrong. He and the other men were putting lives at risk.”

Five members of the gang jailed

Sentencing five of the gang to jail terms ranging from 16 months to four-and-a-half years, Judge HH J Barrie said: “The idea that crash for cash frauds are victimless crimes has to be rebuffed immediately. The impact of this offending on the insurance industry is substantial and this in turn leads to routine increases in insurance premiums for the wider public.”

“Moreover no regard is had at all for the occupants of those cars or their vulnerability. In short, the risk to innocent members of the public of serious injury or worse cannot be underestimated in this type of fraud involving deliberate dangerous driving.”


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