Scene of an accident information can cut claim time

Article date: 4 June 2009

Fleet drivers who gather information at the scene of an accident can speed up the insurance claims process, says Aviva, the new name for Norwich Union.

Martin Smith, technical motor claims manager at Aviva, said: “Even minor accidents can be inconvenient and distressing for drivers but capturing the right information at the scene will enable their insurers to determine responsibility quicker and reduce the length of the claim for all parties.”

As Smith explains, it is a legal requirement to exchange certain information with the other driver at the scene of an incident.

“Exchanging names and addresses is required by law; however drivers can do more that will assist their insurers. Make sure they have a record of contact details of all people involved in, or who witnessed, the incident. Note the make, model and registration number of all vehicles involved as well as the extent of the damage to the vehicles, such as whether they are still drivable.  This will help in dealing effectively with the other driver and their insurers.

“Making sure you can supply your insurers with the exact time and location of the incident also helps, as will gathering the details of what happened, including any witnesses or third parties’ version of events.  But we do urge drivers to avoid becoming involved in conversations about who was to blame and to never admit liability.”

In the current economic climate, insurers are likely to see an increasing number of fraudulent motor claims, according to Smith.

“In addition to the legally required information, it can also speed up the claims process if the fleet driver takes note if any person involved is physically injured or is complaining of pain or discomfort.  This can be useful in helping to avoid any fraudulent claims such as staged accidents which are an increasing problem.

“If drivers get the chance, a quick diagram of the accident scene showing the road layout, position of vehicles, other relevant features and witness locations can be really helpful. And as many mobile phones now incorporate cameras, and if it’s possible and safe to do so, taking photos of the vehicle positions and damage caused is useful.

“Finally, having captured all this useful information, fleet drivers need to ensure they pass it on and report accidents as soon as possible to their insurers.”


For further information, please contact:
Elinor Graveson at Staniforth on 0161 919 8025 / 07973 360 141 or Adam Cracknell, Aviva’s UK Insurance press office on 01603 684916 / 07800 699517

Notes to editors:

Aviva, the international savings, investments and insurance group, is the world’s fifth largest insurance group, serving 50 million customers across Europe, North America and Asia Pacific.

In the UK, Aviva is a leading provider of life, pensions, investment, general insurance and health products to more than 20 million customers. We also provide roadside assistance through RAC. Products are distributed through a number of channels including IFAs, brokers, corporate partners and direct to customers via the internet.

Aviva's UK Insurance business has a market share of around 15%, making it the largest general insurer in the UK. The business is focused on insurance for individuals and small businesses.

Aviva's life and pensions business in the UK has a total market share of 12% and a top three position in its key markets of savings, protection, and annuities.

Aviva’s news releases and a selection of images are available from the internet press centre at

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