Why it’s not ok to ‘dent and run’

According to a new survey, 14.3% of UK motorists wouldn’t own up to damaging someone else’s car… which means they would all be committing a criminal offence.

Dent in Back of Silver Car from Accident

It’s one of those mornings. You’re running late. The weather’s foul. You’re in a rush and you misjudge parking your hire car or rental van, banging the vehicle in front. The question is, what do you do next?

According to a survey by YourParkingSpace.co.uk, 14.3% of people pretend it never happened and drive off. And in another survey by Motors.co.uk, men were shown to be far more likely to dent and run than women, with 18-24 year olds least likely to own up.

Breaking the law

The Road Traffic Act (1998) states: “If you’re driving a motorised vehicle and are involved in an acci-dent which causes damage or injury to another person, vehicle, property or animal, you must stop and give your vehicle registration along with your name and address to ‘anyone with reasonable grounds to be asking for those details.”

Since denting another car clearly falls within this definition, if you dent and run, you’re breaking the law. And with a camera on virtually every street corner and in everyone’s pocket, the risk of being reported is high.

The right road

So here’s what you should do if you bump into another vehicle whilst driving one of our rental cars or vans:

  • Get some details: Collect some information about the vehicle you’ve hit (reg no, make, model). If you can, take a few pictures of the damage.
  • Own up: On the assumption the driver of the vehicle you hit isn’t around, leave your name and contact details and our name and contact details (TJS Self Drive, and the depot from which you hired your vehicle) on the windscreen.
  • Tell us: It’s a condition of your rental that you tell us about any accidents you have. We’ll need you to fill in an accident report within a reasonable time too so we can liaise with our insurers. Bear in mind that if you don’t tell us about the accident you could incur significant charges, so it’s best to do it as soon as possible.

Finally, don’t panic. Accidents happen, and minor dents and bumps are usually easily resolved when the right procedures are followed.

To talk to us about your car or van rental, get in touch.

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