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Driven to Distraction: Making a Foreign Car Accident Injury Claim

by Personal Injury Claims Blawg on February 15, 2017

New contribution regarding foreign car accident injury claims –  Many of us love to take our cars with us on trips abroad, or hire one at our destination. But how many of us even know the rules of the foreign roads we’re driving on? Or how to make a car accident injury claim in the event of something going wrong?

Millions of Brits take to foreign roads in their own car or a hire car each year, drawn by the freedom and independence of exploring a new or familiar country under the own steam. But even though there’s something of a boom in foreign driving underway, a surprising number of us don’t bother to check the rules of the roads we’ll be driving on before setting off; not even a quick Google search. This leads to accidents just waiting to happen, opening up the possibility of car accident injury claims.

In fact, driving laws around familiar destinations in Europe can often be far different from what we’re used to back home. Fall foul of them and you could not only be in trouble with the law, but you could cause an accident. Worryingly, one major survey found that 71% of British motorists planning road trips on the Continent did not know the road rules in their destination of choice.

It’s all the more perplexing for British drivers on foreign roads, given that we drive on the left and, well, practically everyone else drives on the right. The survey, carried out by Dutch satellite navigation firm TomTom, also discovered that many British people (26% of those surveyed) have actually driven on the wrong side of the road while abroad; didn’t know which lane was best to drive in (22%); are unaware of the speed limit (19%); and don’t understand road signs in the country they’re driving in (18%).

Those Crazy Europeans and Their Barmy Road Rules

So it’s safe to assume that the average Brit thinking about heading out on foreign roads just blithely assumes everything is the same there as it is at home. But, this assumption could prove extremely costly. Practically every country has its own different, somewhat quirky regulations concerning driving on their roads. If you do end up having to make a car accident injury claim, you’d better be aware of them.

Take France, for instance; one of the most popular destinations for British people driving around in their own or rented cars. France is so near and yet so far, in terms of road use culture. There, you’ll be required to have a breathalyser in your car. In neighbouring Spain, also a perennial British favourite, you’ll need to carry a spare pair of glasses in your car — if you use glasses for driving, that is. Meanwhile, motoring without your headlights on at all times will certainly get you into trouble in Sweden.

Additionally, how many of us know that our British driving licence might not be enough for the country we’re planning to drive in? You may be required to also have an International Driving Permit, which you can easily get from the Post Office for very little cost. Not having one, if the driving law of the land you’re in calls for it, could mean trouble if you’re considering a car accident injury claim.

Making a Foreign Car Accident Injury Claim

If you are involved in an accident while driving abroad, it’s vital that you immediately call the police. It’s a legal requirement in most countries when a vehicle involved in the incident is from another nation. Remember: across Europe, it’s not 999, but 112. It’s also important that you do not apologise or admit liability for what happened, even if you’re feeling nervous or intimidated by others on the scene. That could certainly affect the outcome of a car accident injury claim.

Take out your phone and start taking photos and perhaps also videos of the vehicles involved. Capture the situation from a number of angles so it’s clear to all later if you need to make a car accident injury claim. If there are people around who saw what happened, approach them and ask for their names and contact details, as they may be valuable witnesses you can use as part of your case.

When you’re back home, you’ll need the best legal advice you can get to help make your car accident injury claim succeed. Experienced firms like Mayiclaim have the expertise you need to win your case and get compensation. Their expert solicitors will be able to unearth all the proof necessary and handle the often complex cross-border legal requirements involved in these types of claims.

Then, the next time you’re driving abroad, you’ll know what to look out for so an accident won’t put the brakes on your holiday.

Personal Injury Claims Blawg

Personal Injury Claims Blawg

PI claims blogger at PIClaimsBlawg
Personal Injury Claims Blawg is a personal injury law blog, inviting contributions from practitioners, PI law firms and legal academics across the UK, US and beyond. The post above has been published because of the high value associated with the author's work. Contact us if you'd like to get published today.
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