An accident is always going to be stressful – it doesn’t matter if it’s a little bump or big crash. So, when you’re trying to figure out how to remove your car from the scene, you may not be thinking straight and unfortunately, you’re vulnerable to tow truck scams. But fear not, as with anything knowledge is power, so we go through some things to think about to make sure you don’t get scammed when organising a cheap tow.
Contact your insurer
Before you do anything, contact your insurer who may be able to organise a tow. If they don’t provide the service, check that you’re covered if you organise it. Not all policies cover towing so it’s worth finding that out before you start.
In order to tow a vehicle from the scene of an accident, they must be a licensed tow truck driver. Ask about their credentials on the phone and ask to see proof when they arrive. Don’t forget, you have the right to choose whether or not you go with them at all times.
Are they reliable?
Cheaper isn’t always better. Make sure you read online reviews as there’s nothing worse than being stranded on the side of the road. When you make the call, the tow truck provider should ask you about your location and provide a timeframe for arrival. Some cheap tow truck companies may give you a good price but they won’t give you a reliable timeframe.
Have they asked for enough information?
There are several factors which a reliable tow truck service would take into account before providing a quote. Things such as your location, where you want the vehicle dropped off, what type of vehicle you have, what the conditions of the accident are etc. As a minimum, you should be asked the following:
* Where is the vehicle located? – location will be a big driving force behind the cost. After all there’s a big difference between an accident that happened 50kms from home to 150kms. Distance is the main factor when determining the price of a tow.
* Where would you like it dropped off? – this is entirely your choice, don’t be forced to take it to a lock up yard which can prove pricey. If you want to take the vehicle home whilst you decide what to do with it, that’s completely up to you.
* What type of vehicle do you have? – the size and weight of a vehicle will determine the size of the tow truck required.
* What’s the reason for the tow? – is it a mechanical failure or crash?
* What’s your time preference for pick up and drop off? – the urgency of the situation will affect the price. Obviously if you’re stranded on the side of the freeway, you’ll want to be picked up urgently.
* Is the vehicle drivable or steerable? – it will make the job less complicated if it is which will affect price.
* What’s the position of the car right now? – is it stuck in the right lane or have you managed to move it to the hard shoulder?
* Are there any other considerations that can make the tow easier for you?
Article provided by Sheen Group