Be Fraud Aware

Have I got a deal for you. March is Fraud Awareness Month in Canada and with a little extra effort you could help save BC motorists nearly half a billion dollars a year just be being a little more fraud aware.

Surprised to find yourself in the midst of an accident? Here are some red flags that could suggest a staged collision:
fender-bender-prevent-fraudThe impact occurs at low speed with little damage to the vehicles involved and several passengers claim to have soft-tissue injuries.
• There are conflicting descriptions by those at the scene about how the accident occurred.
• A tow truck arrives almost immediately at the scene.
• Someone is at the scene ready to suggest a repair facility, clinic or other service provider.

If you suspect that you were a victim of a staged collision, call the police from the accident scene, document all that you can, carefully review anything that you are asked to sign, contact your insurance representative right away and use ICBC’s tip line if you suspect a scam: 1-800-661-6844.

The best advice is avoidance, steer clear of these fraudster’s favourite weapons by avoiding tailgating and by looking well beyond the front of your car while driving.

For more tips from the Insurance Bureau of Canada on avoiding auto insurance fraud click here.

On the Road Again

One of the guaranteed signs of summer is the start of Bike to Work Week. It also signals an increase in two-wheeled traffic on the roads. Over the last five years, Vancouver Island has had an average of 280 incidents involving vehicle/bike collisions. We can reduce that, but everyone needs to do their part to keep our roadways safe.

cycling safety tipsYour best bet for a safe and successful commute includes these cycling safety tips:

  • Drivers when turning right, shoulder check and signal well in advance. Yield to cyclists;
  • Drivers and passengers check for oncoming cyclists before opening car doors;
  • Cyclists proper safety equipment such as a good helmet, reflective gear and lights both back and front on your cycle are more than a good idea – they are legal requirements;
  • Cyclists choose bike lanes/paths or routes with reduced traffic when possible;
  • And, both cyclists and drivers should be familiar with hand signals and follow all the rules of the road.

Looking for more tips? ICBC’s Bike Smarts Guide is a great resource.

Think you’re ready? Take ICBC’s RoadSense Tips test.