It is unavoidable, at some point, you might find yourself hitting an animal crossing the road. In Canada collision with wind animals are very common. In Ontario alone, it is estimated that over 14,000 wildlife accidents happened each year.
Knowing what to do when you find yourself in this situation can make the difference between having an insurance claim on your car and finding yourself in a situation where you have to pay an insurance claim on someone else. So, are you wondering what you should do if you get into an accident with wildlife? If yes, then today you have just landed in the right place because in this article, we are going to tell you the steps that you need to take if you find yourself in this unfortunate situation.
1. Stop the car
The most unfortunate thing that you can do if you get into an accident with wildlife is hit and run. If you get involved in an accident with wildlife, we recommend to stop at the scene immediately, regardless of whether it was your fault or not. You need to stop the car and stay at the scene until when the police and other relevant officials arrive at the scene to get hold of any crucial information that they need.
2. Ensure your safety
Before you get out of the car to go and see how baldy the animal has been injured, it is very important to first ensure that you are safe. If you quickly get out of the car to go and check the animal, you may put your life in danger because a car or truck might be coming behind and you can easily become the next victim. Your safety should always be your first concern. Never touch an injured wild animal even if it seems harmless. If it is scared and hurt, it can act in a way that you may not like.
3. If necessary, call the police
If you hit an animal such as a dog, goat, cattle, sheep, donkey or mules, you are required by the law to report that incident to the police. However, if you hit another type of animal such as fox or cat, you are not compelled to report the matter to the police. However, you can contact the police if you feel like.
It is very important to call the police especially if the animal that you have just hit is badly injured. The police will quickly identify a vet who can help stabilize the animal. You also need to call the police if the animal is blocking the road or if it has created a hazard to other drivers. If your car has been damaged as a result of wildlife accident, the police report will play a big part in determining whether you will get compensated or not. Don’t tamper with evidence until the police arrive at the scene. In addition to that, ensure that you give police the right information about the cause of the accident.
4. Document damages and report the incident to the insurance company immediately
If you get into an accident with large animal such as elk, deer or moose, chances are that the accident will leave a considerable damage to your car. However, if you have comprehensive coverage and optional collision coverage with your car insurance, then you have nothing to worry about because the insurance company will cover the loss.
The collision coverage actually provides protection just in case your car gets damaged in a wildlife accident. On the other hand, comprehensive insurance provides coverage even for claims that are not related to accidents.
The nature of the accident will determine which coverage applies. For instance, if a moose was lying dead on the road probably from a previous accident but you also happened to hit it thus damaging your car, the collision coverage will apply because there will be expectations that you had time to react meaning that there is a likelihood that you could avoid the collision because you have seen it on time.
On the other hand, if you find yourself in a situation where the moose suddenly appears on the road and you hit it thus damaging your car, a comprehensive coverage will apply because there was little that you could do to avoid hitting the animal.
If you find yourself in this situation and your car gets damaged, don’t hesitate to call us and book an appointment with us to get it fixed.