Driving your vehicle in heavy winds can be dangerous for a number of reasons. You may have trouble controlling your vehicle, while the motorists around you may have the same issue. This can dramatically increase your risk of being in an accident. The other issue with driving in high-wind conditions is that many objects can go airborne and hit your vehicle, causing damage. This can be a difficult position in which to find yourself, because you'll have vehicular damage without an obvious other party that caused it. Here are some actions that you can take in the event of this unfortunate incident.
Determine The Object's Owner
Unless the object hit your vehicle and continued on its way, you should stop where it's safe and approach the object. Your priority is to determine the owner of it — this will be necessary for you to take legal action. For example, if a real estate agent's sign caused the damage, the owner of the sign is highly evident. However, you may have to dig a little deeper in other cases. For example, if a commercial sign broke free and hit you, the company featured on the sign may not be the owner. Look closely to see if there's a commercial advertising company's information on the bottom corner or the back of the sign.
Document Everything With Photos
Photos can support any car accident case, and given how most people have a smartphone, there's never an excuse not to take photos. Use your camera app to take photos of the damage to your vehicle and the condition of the sign. If there's evidence on the sign that indicates it made contact with your vehicle, such as the color of your vehicle's pain transferred onto the sign, make sure to capture a good picture of this. Don't leave the scene, as photos from the scene add more authenticity.
Contact A Car Accident Attorney
Before you leave the scene, call an auto accident attorney to explain what has happened and ask how you should proceed. The sign can be valuable evidence in the event of a court case or settlement discussion, so you may be leery to leave it behind. At the same time, you don't want to face your own legal problems for taking something that doesn't belong to you. Your attorney will advise you whether you should take or leave the sign, and may even come to the scene to further document the damage to your vehicle.