Major Case Unit: The Importance of Timely Reporting of Losses

iStock_000023359514SmallYou’ve heard the adage, time’s a wastin’. It’s certainly true with trucking losses. Moments after a commercial vehicle is involved in an accident, valuable information begins to fade and details of a defensible case are lost. Witnesses may leave the site before the police identify them. If vehicles are moved from the scene, vital data captured on electronic control modules could be altered or destroyed. Wrecker crews may clear up important debris. The tapes on local security cameras that recorded the accident might be erased.

Swift collection of evidence is particularly critical when sizeable losses are involved, which is precisely why large truck insurers press for immediate notification of incidents. When claims are not reported immediately, it leads to critical gaps in protection because rapid response teams cannot be dispatched to the crash scene to collect crucial evidentiary details. Rapid response teams can be mobilized anywhere within the continental U.S. and they offer insureds access to a network of incident experts and trucking defense attorneys.

Consider a no fault accident – the likelihood of a positive outcome is greatly improved when accurate records and solid physical evidence bolster trucker statements. On the flip side, the mere lack of information can lead to a ruling against a trucker, even when the initial findings may have been positive. When there are no on-site accident details, logs or maintenance records are incomplete, or if the other side’s experts don’t get the opportunity to inspect our equipment, the door is opened for a complicated claim.

Whether true or not, courts may take missing information as evidence the trucker is trying to hide something, which is called evidence spoliation. This moves the case beyond accident facts and calls into question the actions of all those involved after the accident is history.

So, the next time you’re in an accident, remember that time’s a wastin’ – use Canal’s Mobile Assistant App, call 800.492.6911 or go online to Report A Loss for fast reporting that can make all the difference!