What to Do After an Accident

A car accident can be a difficult situation no matter how minor. The important thing to remember is that car accidents happen all the time, and your safety is the highest concern after an accident occurs. Worry about caring for yourself first, and then you can determine how to care for the car and sort out the situation with your insurance company. Since car accidents can often leave you disoriented and in shock, it’s important to prepare beforehand to know what to do after a car accident. The following steps should all be taken directly after an auto accident occurs:

1. Analyze the Damage to the Car and Personal Injuries

While remaining as calm as possible, analyze the vehicle for any new damages that occurred as a result of the auto accident. Major injuries will most likely manifest themselves right away, but you should always be sure to check for minor injuries on your person as well. These injuries might include bumps, scratches, bruises and mild pain in any area of the body. If it’s possible, try to document these damages and injuries with a cell phone camera, digital camera or any other recording device you may have on you.

2. File a Report

Call your local police station (or just dial 911 if you don’t have the number on hand) and file a report for the accident to ensure it is properly recorded. Limit the conversation to general details and avoid talking about fault or liability of any parties involved until you discuss the auto accident with your insurance agent first. Be sure to call your insurance agent right after you call the police to file your claim as quickly as possible.

3. Limit Your Discussion of the Auto Accident

An exciting event like an auto accident may be tempting to talk about with all your friends or post on Twitter, but the most practical thing to do after the accident is to only discuss the information with the police and your insurance agent. This ensures that nothing you say in a shocked state of mind will be used against you and possibly limit the amount of insurance you are qualified for. Bringing others into the situation not only exacerbates it, but this will also confuse you in terms of what really happened.

Put Down That Phone While Driving

Put Down That Phone While DrivingWith numerous things around to distract a driver, ignoring a call, voice mail or even text is leading in causing a car accident. As per the survey conducted by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration , 20% of the car accidents occurred are mainly due to distracted driving which involved cell phone. Even hands free is failing to prevent crashes. Talking on phone while driving delays your reaction time similar to driving with blood alcohol level of 0.08%.

We have states bringing stringent rules to avoid cellphone use but still the number of accidents continues to grow. This is resulting in growth of many other cell phone applications to prevent drivers from taking calls or texting while driving. More the number of accidents eventually mean higher car insurance premium. Below are some mobile applications to avoid hazards:

  • iZup: This is designed for companies employing drivers. Once the car starts, this gets activated. It bars outgoing calls and incoming calls, emails and text messages will be held.
  • Drive Safe: This application disables calling, texting and emailing capabilities of your phone on reaching certain speed. This is benefiting the parents in controlling their teens on usage of mobile phones. Their access to mails, other social networking sites, texting, calling and more can be timed. However, it does not stop incoming and emergency calls from 911.
  • Drive Smart: This automatically disables calls and texts on your mobile phone on reaching a speed of 10mph. A complete termination to distraction. Used basically by T-mobile users.

There will be certain situations where you will have to use the mobile phone while driving. In such instance pull over, get off the road and start again only after you are done with the talking. You can also install any of the above applications to avoid the distraction. Make sure that you do not text or email while driving. These actions require both hands and eyes to be involved which is supposed to be on roads.

Understand What You Are Paying For

  • Paying for What ?Vehicle mileage :Your car insurance premium will be directly proportional to the usage of the vehicle. If you drive more and if mileage is increased then you will have to pay more premium. You will have to pay more premium because the more you drive the more you are prone to accidents.
  • Age, Gender, marital status : The premium rates for female drivers will be less when compared to male drivers. Male drivers who are 25 years and are unmarried pay more insurance premiums. Premium depends on the traffic records and if they are prone to risk.
  • Type of the car : You will have to pay through your premiums for the fancy cars you own. The costlier the car, the costlier will be your premium. Your insurance rate will be less if you are driving a basic model or a old car. Insurance companies judge the premiums based on the car model history. They keep record of the accidents that model has had and number of thefts of that model and so on.
  • Area of residence : Statistics have made based on the area of residence and later the premiums are decided based on it. Your insurance rate will increase if your area is prone to more car thefts and has got many car accidents in the past. If you are staying in a area which is more crowded or in the city centers then those areas are more prone to thefts and hence you need to end up paying more premiums. If you are staying in a residential area then your premium rates will be lesser. If you are staying in area which has history of natural disasters then you will have to pay more premium.
  • Individual Driving record : The factor which affects your premium rates the most is the driving record. Your premium will be less if you have clean driving record. If you have committed many traffic accidents then your premium rate will increase.
  • Type of Coverage : Depending on the type of insurance you choose, your premiums vary. Each company has different coverage type when you opt for. If you select basic coverages then your premium rates will be lower but if you will have to pay more if you opt for comprehensive coverage.

2 Home and Auto Insurance Facts that Might Cause You to Quit Smoking

Quit Smoking and Get The BenefitsWe’re not here to preach to you about the health dangers of smoking. And you can rest assured that nobody’s going to pass judgment on whatever vices you have. We do, however, want to pass along a bit of information about how being a smoker just might cost you more than you expected in both home and auto insurance premiums. If you decide you’re still unconvinced, simply compare home insurance prices and car insurance prices, alternating your status as “smoker” with “non-smoker” to see for yourself.

Fact #1: Smokers pay more for home insurance. Statistically, the instance of fires in the homes of smokers is much higher than that of non-smokers, who don’t bring with them the increased danger of smoldering ashtrays and still-lit cigarette butts. It makes sense. And as a result, if you smoke you’re going to be quoted a much higher price for coverage when you compare home insurance prices.

Fact #2: Smokers pay more for auto insurance. While this one seems to make a bit less sense than the increased rates for homeowners coverage, it’s one that’s based purely on stats that show smokers tend to be involved in more car accidents that non-smokers. There are two factors that figure into this. First, smokers are inherently higher risk takers than non-smokers, both in and out of their vehicles. Second, those who smoke cigarettes while driving have an added distraction that can lead to more accidents.

If you’re looking for additional ways to save money on home and auto insurance, quitting smoking just might make a significant impact. Remember to review your insurance policies on a yearly basis, and if you’ve quit smoking in the last year be sure to report that fact to your insurance agent. There might be some discounts awaiting you.

Nature’s Dangerous Act – Falling Trees

Be Aware of After Effects of Falling TreesTrees Falling are one of the common risk you could come across as a owner of the home during ice storms and snow, but the extra insurance coverage depends on the context. Ice storms, windstorms, lightning, fires and even insects damage could cause big branches  or trees to fall on your house and cause major property damage. Look out for trees that hang over the power lines, dead trees, trees with trunk cracks or hollows trees.

Know About the Important Coverages

Below are some of the ways as to how would the coverage work under few scenarios:

  • If the tree in your neighbor’s space fell and cause damage to your house and its contents, and other structures on the property. You can claim under your homeowners insurance policy.
  • In case a tree in your area fell on your free garage and roof is damaged. Standard homeowners insurance covers free structures. The removal and damage of the tree will be covered under your home insurance policy.
  • In case if a tree falls on your neighbor’s property or on the house and cause damage then under their insurance policy they can file the claim on their property.
  • If your neighbors tree fall on your compound then your insurer should go and consult your neighbors insurer to cover the damages of your compound. At that point of time you will be reimbursed for the amount of deductible you had insured with.
  • In case your car is damaged when a tree fell in your driveway. This would be covered in your comprehensive insurance. Any damage to your vehicle  will be paid from causes other than car accidents, such as natural disasters, vandalism, collisions with theft and animals.
  • The insurance company not only  pays if the tree has fallen on your home or other structures, it also pays if the tree is fallen on the road.

Smart Phones to Keep The Drive Safe

Smart Technology for Smart DriversWith the use of cell phones and many phone applications, technology is getting bad name when it comes to driving. Lot of distractions will be there while driving because people use their cell phones while driving. Now technology is looking to improve upon safe driving and bring awareness of what is happening on the road.  Many of the companies which are working on technology  and auto manufacturers are exploring the possibilities of car accidents, repairs and  measures for safe driving.

People who use smart phones and are familiar in making good use of the applications can use phone’s camera to point at their business. Along with the business information the phone also shows price points, consumer ratings and other information related to business.

Smart Technology for Smart Drivers!

According to application’s website, the driver can attach the smart phones inside the car so that the camera guides about how the road is further. The display on your phone will be exactly same as how it looks outside the window. It will also display the graphics generated by the computer which show were the lanes are and how much distance is the driver away from hitting the car ahead and in what speed the driver is driving his car. Different color codes are given to measure the distance from one vehicle to another vehicle ahead of you. If the driver is too close to another car,  the color changes from green to yellow to red displaying the distance. If the driver is in danger, very close to clash the car in front of him, an alarming sound is produced from the application. Drivers receive audio warning as well as visual warning.

This application promises the users to reduce the accidents and car insurance claims. This technology is  trying to intimate the driver different kinds of danger he may face while driving. For example: to intimate the driver that an animal is crossing over your car or running  in front of your car  at a distance. Also a detailed report about the foggy, cloudy or any other weather conditions. With the help of right engineering to road safety the enhanced technology would become standard for the upcoming models.

Classic Thoughts About Cell Phone and Driving

Cell phones are dangerous while drivingThe cell phone statistics of car accident shows that text messaging while driving is the most serious activity related to cell phone. In other words, they believed it is unsafe to hold the cell phone in hand will driving. A major part of car accidents have been set apart to cell phone related distraction. It is believe that most crashes involving teen drivers are due alcohol but at same time even the cell phones are one of the primary causes of most teen crashes in the major part of the accidents.

Cell Phone Driving – Not Safe

Loss of Substantial control– It is observed that many drivers try and use only one hand on the steering wheel but it is important to use both the hands on the steering wheel during an emergency, as it is not safe to driver using a single hand. When the drivers keep talking on the cell phones and driving with one hand at the same time, they operate to hang onto the phone instead they drop it for additional vehicle control.

Peripheral driving vision to be taken away by cell phones- When driving a vehicle the peripheral vision is constantly used even without your notice. It is just more of a subconscious thing that happens which you will be using it most of the time. Holding a phone onto my ear, hand, my arm, and even the cell phone itself is limiting the peripheral vision. The movement of neck restrictions will be caused by the physical act of holding the phone.

Drop age of Phone – When it comes to driving and cell phones, people come through some trouble in dangling on to the phone! Whether it is fumbling to answer the ringing cell phone, cell phones get dropped much often in cars or striking the huge pothole. Instinctively, the driver will go down to grab the phone and crash into a bus. The forceful prospect of holding a phone while driving is the beginning and the biggest reason as to why our driving becomes impaired.

Security is Guaranteed with Underwriting

More security less is the premiumWhen you are buying an insurance policy, you get to hear the word ‘Underwriter’. Underwriter is an insurance person who does underwriting. Many a times an insurer who owns a policy from any insurance company will not be aware that at some point their application passed through an underwriter’s hand. Insurance company is run at high risk. It protects individuals from financial loss occurring due to car accidents, home burglary, property damage, illness and others. Getting involved in such big business, underwriting is one of the most important aspect of insurance process. So, it is necessary to know what an underwriter does and why is it salient, before you shop for an insurance policy.

Underwriting Defined

Underwriting is a process to ensure that the insurance companies charge the right amount of insurance coverage. An underwriter decides if insurance is to be provided, if so, then under what terms. It happens pretty much behind the scene in the company, they are also involved in choosing who the insurance company will not insure. They are employed by the insurance companies. If the company charges too little for the coverage, they will run out of money to pay for the claims but if they charge too much, they will loose customers to competitors. Here an underwriter will provide a helping hand to insurance companies in order to decide accurate prices. He has a vital role in detecting and preventing fraud. They use sophisticated computer software and actual data provided by the customers to evaluate the risk involved, a likelihood and magnitude of payout in insuring a customer over the life of policy.

Handling Underwriting

As underwriting plays a major role in obtaining an insurance policy to protect you and your needs, you need to understand how to handle underwriting process when applying for an insurance policy. Do not lie or provide any wrong information on an insurance application. Carefully think before you provide any details and supply the required information to the company’s underwriting department else it can lead you to be prosecuted for fraud.  Once the form is submitted, an underwriter will contact you to clarify or if in need of more information, respond to them for fast process of your application. Finally, an underwriter will evaluate your risk and will place you on one of the different risk zones. Based on which your premium will be determined. Please note that your insurance policy can be declined based on underwriter’s risk evaluation.