car wing mirror hanging off, person noting down the damage

In the UK, it’s becoming more and more common for parked cars to be hit, and the culprit not being held accountable. So with that in mind, today I’m sharing what to do if you hit a parked car. Read on for a step by step guide – perfect for even the most nervous of drivers.

*This is a partnered post

What To Do If You Hit A Parked Car

If you’re involved in any kind of collision, rule number one is STOP! Failing to do so is a crime, so make sure you pull over. If you are being pursued or feel threatened, keep the car locked and phone the police immediately. Read on to find out what to do if you hit a parked car, specifically.

Don’t Panic

The majority of drivers will clip something at one point or another – you’re only human! I clipped a wall when reversing last year – after 13 years of driving. You’re only human, so don’t be too hard on yourself. (Assuming you weren’t distracted while driving, of course). Just over 21% of new drivers in the UK are involved in an accident in their first year of driving.

Make Notes

I know it sounds silly, but note down exactly where you are. “Fifth Avenue” won’t cut it with the police. It’s best to note which property you were outside, or approximately how far from a named junction, for example. If you happen to be abroad on holiday, it may be worth searching for a car accident attorney if you need any clarification on local laws.

Additionally, noting down the vehicle’s make, model and colour is a good idea. As is making a note of other contributing factors. These can include bad weather, swerving in an emergency or even failing brakes. Your mind can forget all kinds of things when it’s had a scare, so don’t assume you’ll remember everything.

what to do if you hit a parked car - photo shows someone taking photos on their phone of the damage to both cars.

Motorist Involved In Car Accident Taking Picture Of Damage For Insurance Claim

Take Photos

Technology is wonderful in times like this. Take photographs of the vehicle (or object) you hit, and focus on the damage caused by you. Photograph the entire vehicle though in case they try to say your bump caused more damage than it did. Taking photos of your own car’s damage will help cover you if that happens, too.

Leave Your Details

If the owner isn’t present, it can be tempting to leave the scene. Be mindful that this is illegal, and others may have your details. So honesty is the best policy, in my opinion. Leave a note on the windscreen with your name, phone number, email address and details of what happened. The Government are very clear about what you need to do.

When they get in touch, you’ll probably find they are grateful for your honesty as so many people hit and run. You can decide between yourselves whether you will pay for the damage or if it needs to be covered by your car insurance. That said, some UK insurers want to be notified of every single bump, so you may still need to inform them to keep your policy valid.

One final note: Remember to breathe. You’re only human, and accidents happen.