Accidents are common in Malaysia, which is not surprising given that there are more vehicles than people in the country. According to the Road Transport Department (RTD) statistics, there were 533,875 road accidents in 2019, of which 6,740 cases were fatal. No one wants to be in an accident, but it is definitely better to know what to do if you are involved in an accident, regardless of how safely you drive.
1 Safety first
It’s difficult to remain calm after an accident. But that’s really what you should be doing. Take a few deep breaths and find a safe place to stop the car. Before you exit your car, remember to switch on the hazard lights so other drivers can see you and know to avoid you. You can also deploy a warning triangle up the road so other drivers have advanced warning of the accident. Once you leave the car, check if anyone needs medical assistance. Immediately call an ambulance (999) if anyone is injured.
If the accident occurs in the middle of the night, wear something bright or visible if you do have them on hand. By becoming more visible, you could prevent another accident from happening.
2 Evaluate the damage
If no one is injured, you can begin to evaluate the damage to your car. Take pictures of the damage and note down the exact location of the accident, as you will need them for the police report. If there are other parties involved in the accident, take photos of their car registration and road tax information.
If the accident is not serious and your car is still working, you can head to the nearest police station to make a police report.
3 Get the car towed
If damage to the car is severe, such as a collision to the front of the car, it is better to call your car manufacturer or insurance provider. They can send a trusted towing service to collect your car and deliver it to a panel workshop. This towing service could also be complimentary if it’s provided by the manufacturer or insurance provider’s road assistance service. Their numbers are usually displayed on your windscreen stickers and should be saved on your phone. You don’t want to risk a breakdown at an inconvenient location.
Using a trusted towing service is also crucial because ‘vultures’ or miscellaneous tow truck services can miraculously appear on the scene! These ‘vultures’ will descend upon you, offering to tow your car to a nearby workshop or police station. Don’t ever fall prey to these vultures as it might cost you an arm or a leg for the towing service.
4 Make a report
If you decide to call the police, wait for the patrol car and explain to the officers what happened as soon as they arrive. After the initial survey by the police, the cars will be towed to the nearest station where both owners are required to make a police report for insurance claims. If you do not call the police, go to the nearest police station with a traffic police department within 24 hours to make a report. Otherwise, you may be fined.
At the police station, you will need to provide:
- Your name, ID, and driving license.
- Time and exact location of the car accident.
- The registration numbers (license plates) of the cars involved.
Once you are done, collect and check the police report. The offender will be issued a summon which can be paid online.
5 Claim insurance
Once you have the police report, inform your insurance company or panel workshop. You may need to go to the workshop to hand over a copy of the police report and insurance policy. Only then will the insurance adjuster determine how much the repairs cost and the workshop will begin repairing your car. This is why it’s important to gather as much information and evidence as you can at the scene of the accident.
It usually takes about 2 weeks for insurance claims, depending on the insurance company’s policies. It could take up to a month before you’d see your car again. In the meantime, you can prepare to claim compensation for assessed repair time (CART).
Check out our article about how Car insurance in Malaysia works!
Car accidents are no joke. It not only costs you valuable time and money, but it also puts your life at risk. That is why at myTukar we do not compromise on safety and ensure that every myTukar Certified car has no major accident, fire or flood damage. Browse our inventory of cars for the one for you!
This article is an update: What to do after an accident.