PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — It’s one of the many things every driver has to be cautious about when driving in the winter … crashes.
The slushy roads, snowy windshields, and unpredictable brakes offer a recipe for potential disaster for motorists.
With the recent snowfall in the area, Wednesday morning, along with the head-on collision on the eastbound lanes of I-74 that resulted in the death of one of the drivers, the Peoria County Sheriff’s office issued a collision alert for the county.
Dick Thulean, a State Farm agent, said aside from driving carefully if you get into an accident involving more than one vehicle you need to make sure everyone inside your vehicle is alright, then call the authorities.
“When there’s two cars involved you want to [first] call the police,” Thulean said. “The reason for that is you want all the facts at the scene.”
He said calling the police at the scene ensures all of the information collected will be accurate. Thulean said after filing a police/crash report, the next step is to call your insurance company to file a claim. However, he said this process isn’t always the case when only one vehicle is involved.
“If your car slides into a curb, yours is the only car involved, your car is drivable with just some minor damage you don’t really have to call the police,” Thulean said. “You may have to fill out a crash report.”
This is a similar case to Luke Abraham who recently slid and had an accident of his own.
“I lost control of the car and I saw the opportunity to jump onto the curb instead of going into oncoming traffic so I took the opportunity,” Abraham said. “I lost my bumper but I didn’t hit anybody else.”
Abraham said since no other car was involved, he chose to take care of the damage himself instead of going through insurance.
Thulean said that response is common for those who don’t want to file many claims and have their insurance rate increased, but he said it could be a problem financially.
“Body shop costs are much higher than people realize,” Thulean said. “If you haven’t been to a body shop in the last five years, you have no clue what it costs to repair your car.”
He said when it comes to insuring your vehicle, he recommends getting as much liability coverage as you can get to help cover any bodily harm involving those involved in the accident. He said the next most important thing is getting collision coverage to help get your car fixed.
“Don’t try to save a buck or two on liability insurance because if another party gets injured, you could end up owing a lot of money.”