Angry woman and man drivers of heavily damaged vehicles calling insurance service for help in car crash accident on street side. Road safety concept.

New York City streets can be dangerous for even the most cautious and attentive drivers among us. In addition to everyday hazards, TLC-licensed drivers have often been targeted for “staged accidents.” This column offers tips on what to look for, how to avoid them and what to do in the event of an accident.

Targeting FHV Drivers

There have been reports of drivers receiving a job via an app, and the passengers they pick up are colluding with another vehicle that follows the FHV and rear-ends it or sideswipes it, then flees the scene. To help avoid being a victim of this criminal activity, we recommend the following:

  • While drivers must keep their eyes focused on the road ahead, effective Defensive Driving requires you to regularly glance in your rearview mirror, not just at red lights and stop signs, so you can be alerted if another vehicle is following too closely, speeding or driving recklessly. This could aid you and your insurance carrier in an investigation of a suspicious accident, where passengers are claiming injury for a minor accident or a suspicious one.
  • Always attempt to obtain a photo or write down the license plate of a fleeing vehicle that may have struck your vehicle. Just make sure you are safe and able to do so without risking your safety or the safety of your passengers.
  • DO NOT attempt to follow or confront the driver of such a vehicle, but note the description of the driver, as well as the make, model and color of their vehicle, if you can do so safely.

Please Obtain the Following in the Event of an Accident

  • All involved drivers and passengers’ names, addresses, license numbers and phone numbers.
  • The vehicle owner’s name, address and phone number (if different from driver).
  • Insurance company names (or 3-digit code), policy number and expiration date.
  • The names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses.
  • The phone number and precinct number of any responding police officers, as well as the accident report number.
  • The name, address and phone number of any medical facility anyone is taken to from the scene by ambulance.
  • The name, address and phone number of any tow trucks responding to and removing vehicles from the scene.
  • Take pictures of all the vehicles involved. Make sure you take the point of impact and all sides of all vehicles involved from all angles. Take photos of any skid marks, traffic signals, or any related factors that may have caused the accident. Take photos of the scene from up close and a distance. Photograph nearby buildings and stores, as witnesses may have seen the accident but were unable to come forward at the time. If they allow, take a photo of the other party’s state issued ID cards or driver’s license.
  • Under no circumstances should you attempt to settle the accident at the scene by offering or accepting cash from any involved driver or passenger.
  • Please attempt to discreetly take photos of any bicyclist, pedestrian or other involved drivers, as well as all passengers in your vehicle and any other vehicle involved.
  • Please make a mental note of all involved and provide your insurance provider with their descriptions – including race, sex, weight, height and any distinguishing marks or scars. While this is a tall order, it can be invaluable information in the event of a lawsuit.
Article by Black Car News

Black Car News provides breaking news, editorial, and information to drivers, owners, and other key players in the New York City for-hire vehicle industry.

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