Accidents and AA / RAC cover - SteveH42
Luckily I've not had these circumstances apply, but I've heard different things from different people and wondered if anyone can give a fairly definitive answer.

Basically, will the AA or RAC recover your car if it is rendered immovable in an accident, or unsafe to drive?

A friend at work says the only reason he gets cover is for this eventuality, but another friend says that she had to pay for towing and storage costs after an accident.

I'd always assumed they would recover the car as they always bandy words like recovery and rescue around, but thinking about it, the service they sell is *Breakdown* recovery. So, what is the situation?
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - Blue {P}
As far as I know they will recover after accidents, 'cos then they get the chance to push you into using their accident management services and legal services to claim compensation.

It's a bit pointless paying for it though 'cos as far as I know most if not all insurance companies will recover your car after an accident, immediately.

I like the way that Ford operate, if I have an accident I call the Ford Incident Management people, provided by the RAC, they recover the car, deal with Ford Insure, arrange repairs, deal with any hassle with the other driver's insurance and ensure that I'm back on the road ASAP. I have their number saved on my mobile, along with the policy number in the glovebox.

But then I get full RAC cover as well with it being a new car, however, the incident management cover lasts throughout my ownership IIRC.

Blue
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - SteveH42
The impression I'm getting from my friend who needed to use them was that while they will recover you, they'll charge you as if you didn't have a policy with them at all. Also, insurance companies would only recover you if you were not to blame, or had fully comp I'd assume.

The incident I've been told about resulted in my friend being charged for:

Ambulance to hospital. (Quite how they expected her to get there with a shattered pelvis and suspected spinal damage otherwise I don't know)
Towing to storage area.
Storage charge.
Scrapping of vehicle.
Parts to allow the tow truck to tow her car.

She wasn't give then option over where the car was towed, stored or how it was scrapped either.

This is also the incident I mentioned in another thread ages back where despite evidence suggesting the other driver was >20 mph over the limit at the time of the accident, she somehow got full blame for it and as she only had TPFT, had to pay all these costs out of her own pocket. (Not that this is really relevant to the question I'd put originally!)
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - HisHonour {P}
RAC used to charge for recovery from an accident but don't any longer.

Ambulance and casualty hospital have billed for transport and treatment for at least the last 35 years - bill normally settled by Insurance company.

Someone please tell me what IIRC means?
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - HF
'If I recall/remember correctly', M'Lud.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - SteveH42
Thanks for that info - makes me glad I'm in the RAC then!

As for being billed for transport, what is the justification behind this? You aren't billed if the ambulance is called to your home and if you are badly injured they won't let you refuse to be taken to hospital so if you are not in a position where insurance will pay out (TPFT / other driver did a runner) then you will lose out.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - SpamCan61 {P}
I looked into this issue recently & the AA's terms and conditions basically say they are not interested if you have an accident as opposed to a breakdown. to qoute from their web site In the event that you require vehicle recovery following a road traffic accident, the AA can, if you require, provide this for you but will not be responsible for meeting the costs involved. . seems pretty clear.

Trouble with the RAC is, unless you take out the full-on all options level of cover; it appears that more than one call out a year is considered 'misuse'. So that didn't exactly give me much peace of mind either.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - Cliff Pope
The whole question of who pays or does what after an accident seems a very dubious area.
A colleague was rear-ended last year and injured. While waiting for an ambulance the police ordered him to clear his smashed vehicle or be charged with obstructing the highway. He was in no position to argue, so let the recovery vehicle that had miraculously just turned up (back-hander to police?)take the car away.
When he got out of hospital he found a bill for recovery and storage from the garage, and the insurance company refused to pay because he had not arranged it through them. They then also refused to pay the hospital charges. The garage refused to let him remove his car because he had not paid the charges, so it is still at the garage clocking up more charges.
The latest is that he informed the insurance company that he intended declaring bankruptcy, and they have suddenly agreed to pay everything.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - eMBe {P}
HisHonour asked : "Someone please tell me what IIRC means?". Do a search of this site for "abbreviations and acronyms" and you will get a wealth of information on this subject.

SteveH42: The real answer to your initial question is "Read the terms and conditions" of your Breakdown cover, and your Insurance cover. As to why people get charged for emergemcy-services provided after an accident, it is because the Govt has decided that the general-public (and the NHS) should not bear the costs of motorists negligence. The politics behind this is that the public have to start to pay for their actions as far as possible, and that the Nation will only pay for certain basic rights. (Note: The NHS is planning to extend this principle to those who are obese, smoke, or drink; and then continue to ignor Doctors advice to change their lifestyle, and then if they require NHS treatment for the consequences, they will have to pay.)

It is up to the motorist and the insurance companies to sort out who is liable and pay for the costs. Following the recent fire dispute, the Govt has decided to charge motorists (and businesses) for Fire service call-outs which they feel should not be a burden on the taxpayer. So if the fire-brigade has to cut you out of your car after an accident, you will have to pay.

As for the stories where some people have allegedly been forced to pay out of their own pocket despite these people having a strong belief that they were not at fault, there is a legal remedy available for those situations.

If those disputes were brought to a Court, you could hear both sides of the allegation, and you could then decide if these people had been unfairly treated. Until then, I would be inclined to be prejudiced and agree with Victor Meldrew's shout "I just don't believe it". And that is before hearing the other side!

The other issue mentioned was the "accident solutions" service. This is provided by many Manufacturers (without limit to age of car). They get the repair business, and just bill the cost to the Insurance company. However, usually, the small print says this applies to accidents where either you are not to blame or where you have full comprehensive cover - because in those cases they know they can get their bills paid.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - guzzler
I was knocked off my bike a few months ago and had to be taken to hospital by ambulance. Should I be expecting a bill for this to arrive?
To get back to the topic, the RAC, through my insurance company, picked up the damaged bike and took it home. I can also use them to take the bike to any repair shop I choose.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - v8man
You have to hope the police let you use your AA cover. A number of years ago I had a blowout on the M25 near South Mimms services. The car spun a number of times and ended up halfway up the embankment with the rear axle hanging off. The police insisted in using their own recovery (Lantern Recovery) saying that it would arrive sooner than the AA despite my protestations. This cost me £165 for about 2 miles tow to the services. Consider my amazement when I saw that the AA recovery yard was next door to Lantern! The next day a call to the AA confirmed that following an accident I would have been a priority case. Although the AA had no control over the Police they sent me a cheque for £40 as compensation. I understand that motorways in particular need to be cleared quickly but this was ridiculous. Also, the fees charged by these recovery outfits are extortionate and you have no choice but to pay.
Accidents and AA / RAC cover - martint123
This only refers to bikes.

A year or so ago, there was an article in Motor Cycle News (weekly bike paper) where someone was charged by the RAC to recover a bike after an accident. When I read this, I wrote to the RAC and they confirmed that if I was coverered by comprehensive insurance then they would charge me, expecting me to reclaim this from my insurers.
As covering this possibility is one of the main reasons for joining, I wasn't happy and cancelled my cover. I looked at other 'suppliers' and they all had similar clauses.
I see the clause is still there on their web site:-


* What is not covered:
* Towing provided following an accident, fire, theft or act of vandalism, or other incident normally covered by a policy of motor insurance. If you call us for assistance following such an incident you will be liable to pay us for the costs of removal. (Subject to the terms of your insurance policy, you can then reclaim these costs through your insurance)

 

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