Most people aren’t familiar with driving a moving truck until the day they have to move. Moving trucks are much larger than regular vehicles and require the driver to drive with caution. Driving defensively, increasing stopping distance, and being aware of overhead clearance are all tips to help keep you safe on moving day, but- sometimes accidents happen. If you get into an accident while driving a moving truck, don’t panic. This post will walk you through what to do if you have an accident on moving day.
In all cases, take these first steps:
- Get everyone out of the truck. If possible, move the truck off of the roadway to the shoulder or parking lot.
- Call an ambulance if anyone is injured.
- Call the police and file an accident report.
- Call the U-Haul Hotline and have the police report number ready (the operator will ask for this information).
- Remember to write down the other parties’ information.
Depending on whether you’ve purchased coverage or not, and if the truck is drivable, there are a couple different methods of handling the situation when you get into an accident while driving a moving truck. (note that this post was written specifically for U-Haul’s SafeMove and SafeMove Plus coverage. Check with your own rental company and insurance agent for more details).
Scenario one: If you purchased coverage, and the truck is drivable:
If the damage on the truck is something minor and the truck is still drivable, the best thing to do is finish your move, then drive the moving truck back to a rental location. SafeMove plus will cover all accidental damage costs. If you purchased SafeMove and not SafeMove Plus, you may have to cover some damage costs out of pocket as SafeMove has some exclusions.
Scenario two: If you purchased coverage, and the truck is not drivable:
Sit tight; the roadside assistance will be out soon to fix the damages or bring another truck at no cost. In some cases, they will put your belongings into U-Box Containers and send them over to the destination. Even if the accident slowed down the move a bit, you will have some peace of mind knowing that the truck damages are completely covered if you purchased SafeMove Plus.
Scenario three: If you didn’t purchase coverage, and the truck is drivable:
Finish your move, then drive the truck to a rental location to return where you will be billed for damages (as we’ve said before- it’s best just to purchase coverage). One of the most common damage on moving trucks is overhead damage. This can cost up to $15,000 out of your own pocket because most regular insurance companies don’t cover moving truck damages.
Scenario four: If you didn’t purchase coverage, and the truck is not drivable:
Call the police and file a report. Then call the U-Haul hotline for further instructions. Depending on the proximity of the accident from a rental center, you may get a new truck. As soon as you can get to a center, there will be paperwork to fill out. Again, without coverage, you are responsible for all costs for damages. This can get expensive! Be sure to purchase coverage for peace of mind during your move. Moving is stressful enough, and SafeMove coverage gives you one less thing to worry about.