I had my first car accident last week. We were headed to Bryan’s school on a Thursday morning, with Bryan at the wheel. The roads were slippery with after rain so everyone was driving slightly cautiously. Or at least so we thought.
We were on the PIE towards Changi near the BKE exit when someone 6 cars in front of us hit his brakes. this caused a chain reaction of brake lights to flash while everyone tried to stop. I almost had a heart attack seeing how fast the back of the car in front of us was heading towards us as we tried to stop. Luckily we did. So did the guy behind us. But the idiot behind him didn’t.
I must say the feeling of being hit from the back, with the sound of metal crunching, is not a nice feeling. Especially when you’re heaving a sigh of relief from not hitting the car in front of us was quickly replaced by the WHAT THE FUCK feeling when the guy behind us hit us. Bryan put on his WTF face and got out of his car. I followed him to see how bad the damage was.
I saw this and I almost burst into tears. on hindsight, it’s not really that bad. the left of the bumper came out and we lost our license plate (it’s still somewhere on PIE. $50 to the person who finds it!). however since I have an emotional attachment to the car, I was like OOHHH NOOO YOOOOSHIIIMIIIIII! this is why you should NEVER name inanimate objects.
(yes i still have my baby pillow and bolster with me from 30+ years ago, named Pipi and Baba)
Yoshimi’s now has a crooked arse.
The car behind us lost his license plate too.
Then we went to the back and we were like omg. his car was so badly damaged. he lost his entire bumper and the back caved in a bit. the minute we saw this, Bryan’s WTF expression fell to a oh dude I sympathise expression.
The 3rd guy who caused the chain reaction. he didn’t stop in time so he hit the 2nd guy, thereby pushing 2nd guy’s car into our ass. Anyone who has seen the pictures look at this and go HAIYAH LATIO. I have no idea what sort of reputation Nissan Latios have but this is not the first time I heard it said with mild disdain. good thing I didn’t buy a Latio coz god forbid of someone tries to judge me by the brand / model of car I buy.
I think this is the 2nd guy’s back bumper.
Everyone was out of their cars and taking photos of the damage. both guys asked if I were okay and I assured them I was. Luckily the traffic wasn’t too heavy so we didn’t really cause much of a jam. Strangely, there was another fender bender just 100m behind ours. After we exchanged details, we decided to drive to IDAC immediately to make an accident report. On the radio, our friend Joe was making the traffic report. PIE towards Jurong? that’s us Joe!
The process is fairly simple. After an accident, you go to any IDAC approved workshops to get your car checked. these are independent surveyors who will take down your accident report, take pictures and submit it to the insurers. thereafter, you can go to any car workshop that does accident reports (not all of them do). I went to my father’s friend’s workshop who said he will handle everything for us, even getting us a car rental on the spot.
The work shop will then assess the damage and since ours was a 3rd party claim (we claimed from the guy behind us), they invited his assessor to view the damage too. after that, the workshop will fix the car and bear all costs until the insurer pays up. The time it takes also depends on how bad the damage is and the availability of the car parts. Ours took about 2-3 days as our damage wasn’t that bad. In fact the other guy’s assessor viewed our car on the day itself.
When I collected my car 6 days later, I had to sign a Warrant to Act legal document. This document is to give the lawyers (usually appointed by the workshop) permission to represent me in the case to claim against the guy behind me. Usually done at the lawyer’s office, we did it via webcam instead, which was a rather funny experience. First I didn’t know where to look (the screen or the camera). then I had a lady on the screen say hello to me. I had to hold my IC up to the webcam while her colleague verified I’m the right person signing the forms. then as I signed it, the webcam was tilted slightly so all could see me signing on it. This was completed in 5 minutes.
It was so nice to get my car back. The minute I climbed in, I could smell I wasn’t driving an old man car anymore (the Toyota Altis rental). Funny thing about this incident was that when my colleagues heard about my accident, they all had one reaction; WA! LUCKY YOU ARE FIRST CAR! GOOD GOOD! they also each had their own advice regarding car accidents:
– in accidents like these, they usually change the entire bumper, and not just knocking it back in like we thought they would.
– we could have gone back to our distributor’s workshop but the price they will charge will be twice that of a regular workshop. The IDAC guy led us to believe that our distributor doesn’t do repairs.
– Apparently when your car is in the workshop, you could either get a rental or get $50 cash (transport allowance).
– if you’re claiming against someone else, you invariably end up with a repaired car not knowing the cost. I kept asking how much it was but no one told me. It seems as if I didn’t need to pay for it, why bother?