Published 21 Sep 2021
What is a Vehicle Damage Report?
A vehicle damage report summarizes the overall findings from a vehicle damage assessment. Damage reports are used by drivers and fleet managers to support insurance claims. The report documents information regarding vehicles and parties involved, details of the accident, and the extent of the damage.
The vehicle damage report is used to collect necessary information such as details of the driver, vehicle damage, parties involved and witnesses statements to support insurance claims. Follow the points below to utilize the said form:
- Provide general details of the driver (full name, driver license number, VIN etc)
- Add description and sketch the scenario
- Take and annotate unlimited photos as evidence for your case
- Include signatures and statements from witnesses if applicable
- Complete the form by providing digital signatures verified by fleet manager
This article covers:
- how to assess car damage;
- elements of a good damage report;
- technology that can help streamline your reporting processes; and
- vehicle damage report templates you can download and use.
How do You Assess Car Damage?
Before you begin to assess car damage for insurance purposes, you have to take care of any pressing medical concerns first and call for medical attention if needed. Once the health and safety concerns are covered, and there is no risk of sustaining further injuries, you can proceed with assessing the car damage and do the following:
- Inform the legal authorities, such as the local police, so you have a legal record of the vehicular accident.
- If the vehicle is a company asset, submit an incident report that includes details surrounding the event and any injuries sustained, as well as other people involved.
- Take photos of any damage to your car and other vehicles that may have been involved in the incident. Photos may include external as well as internal damages to the car.
- Make some notes and be as detailed as possible about what happened because the information will be needed by the insurance company and legal authorities.
- Contact your insurance provider to inform them about the car damage and discuss if there is a need for certain urgent repairs in order to prevent further damage to the vehicle.
- Discussing the car damage with the insurance provider will also give you a better understanding of what to do next as well as be aware of any costs to fix the damage.
Elements of a Good Vehicle Damage Report
Good vehicle damage report heavily relies on the proper performance of the damage assessment. Vehicle damage assessments should be able to capture not only general information about the time, location, vehicle, and parties involved but also focus on factual details of the accident and the extent of the damage. Below are two key elements that a good vehicle damage report should contain:
- Details of accident
Should cover all the circumstances and possible contributing factors which caused the accident. Details should be as factual and impartial as possible with opinions supported by evidence or explicitly made clear. Opinions of who caused the accident should be supported with sketches, witness statements, and photo evidence.
- Extent of damage
Vehicle damage primarily arises as a result of a collision, weather-impact, and unintended scratches/ dents. It is important to identify all areas of the vehicle that have been damaged and capture sufficient photo evidence of the key damaged areas. It is also important to take photos of the surrounding vehicle and/ or environment involved in the damage.
A good vehicle damage report underpinned by facts, photo evidence, and witness statements will offer better support for insurance claims as well as good fleet recordkeeping.
Paperless Vehicle Damage Reporting
Paper-based damage reports are burdensome for fleet managers to complete and the risk of losing paperwork can put insurance claims at risk. The inability to easily capture and combine photo evidence makes it difficult to identify the extent of the damage.
A digital solution like SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor) can replace paper-based damage reports with a mobile app and cloud solution. iAuditor is easy to use, allows you to capture unlimited photo evidence, and generate real-time damage reports at the scene of the event.
To help you get started, we have built 3 Vehicle Damage Report Templates you can download for free. All templates are 100% customizable, no programming skills needed.
Featured Vehicle Damage Report Templates
A vehicle damage assessment form is used to evaluate the required repair work. This template can be used by assessors to document any damages identified and estimated costs.
- Perform the following key steps when completing the form:
- Capture important vehicle details (e.g., vehicle registration number, VIN, model, etc.)
- Assess both internal and external vehicle damage
- Capture photo evidence and provide a detailed description of the damage
- Provide overall assessment, modifications, and estimated damage cost
- Sign off with digital signatures from client and assessor
An accident report form is used when someone got injured as a result of collision. This template can be used by fleet managers to document the details of the event. Use this template to guide the inspector to perform the following:
- Capture all contact details and verification information of the injured person
- Describe full details of the injury and the accident
- Take photo evidence of the surroundings
- Record emergency services involvement (i.e. police, fire, paramedics), hospitalization information and witness statements
- Capture electronic signatures from the relevant person involved and injured person