What to do if you have an accident in a hire van


Unfortunately, road traffic accidents do happen, and sometimes these do occur in hired vans. If you do find yourself involved in a crash, try you best to stay calm. It is important that you deal with the incident in the same way you would as if you were driving your own vehicle whilst ensuring the safety of yourself, and any others involved.

What to do if you have an accident whilst driving a hired vehicle

Take a look through our pointers for the steps you should take post-incident.

  • Pull over

    Stop the van as soon as possible. It’s an offence not to do so. Turn off the engine. Switch the hazard lights on.

  • Safety first

    Check that you are unharmed before checking if anyone else involved in the accident is injured. If needed, call relevant emergency services.

  • Keep calm

    It’s normal to be shaken after an accident. Take a few deep breaths and try to take stock of the situation the best you can. Don’t lose your temper. A clear mind will be useful in this situation.

  • Assess the situation

    If it’s safe to do so, move the rental van to a secure location to prevent further accidents or traffic disruptions. If you’ve caused damage to private property or a parked car, you should leave your details. Place a note where the owner can see it.

  • Exchange information

    If present, you should exchange contact, insurance, and license details with other parties involved in the accident. If there are passengers or witnesses, try to obtain their contact information as well. Try to find out if the other driver is the registered owner of the vehicle. If they are not, find out who the owner is and get that information too.

  • Don’t admit fault

    Don’t apologise or admit responsibility for the accident until you’re completely aware of what happened – this can protect you from liability if it wasn’t your fault.

  • Document the scene

    Take photos and videos of the accident scene, as well as any damage on all vehicles involved. This may be helpful for insurance purposes and legal matters. You should also make a note of the make, model, colour, and number plate of the vehicles involved, as well as the date and time. You could also list any damage or injury caused.

  • Notify the hire company

    Contact the hire company as soon as possible to report the accident. They will provide guidance on how to proceed and may require specific information or documentation from you. They will also be able to inform you about the insurance company that needs to be contacted.

  • Report the incident

    Depending on the severity of the accident, you may need to report it to the police. This is crucial if the other driver or drivers leave the scene without giving details, if you think the other driver has no insurance or if you think they are under the influence of drink or drugs.

  • Contact the insurance provider

    Notify the relevant insurance provider about the accident, even if you were not at fault. Provide them with accurate and detailed information about the incident from the notes you took.

  • Cooperate

    If an investigation is conducted by the police or insurance companies, cooperate fully and provide accurate information. Be honest about the events.

An at-fault accident involving a hired van could potentially lead to an increase in premiums. However, every insurance provider and policy is different, and the specific impact on premiums can vary. It is advisable to review your insurance policy or contact your insurance provider directly to understand how an accident involving a hired van may affect your premiums.

What happens next will depend on the specific terms and conditions of your hire company. You will have signed a set of T&Cs, and should also have received a copy, at the point of hiring the van so now is a good time to check these again.

Don’t let an accident put you off driving. Often the best thing to do is to get back behind the wheel as soon as you feel comfortable. If you have any questions about van hire and accidents, please talk to our team at Edmonton Van Hire at the point of hiring, or call us on 0203 576 1060 and we’ll be pleased to run through our policies.