Reporting a Decatur Car Accident to the Police
In the moments following an accident, you may be shocked and perplexed by what just happened. As a result, you may be feeling uncertain about what you should do next. However, taking the appropriate measures after an accident could have a significant impact on your ability to recover compensation.
If you were involved in an accident, be sure to alert local law enforcement to the crash’s existence. Doing so not only helps you receive the medical help and other services you may need, but the law may require that you do so. Failing to timely notify law enforcement that you have been involved in a wreck may have both civil and criminal repercussions. An experienced attorney may be capable of helping you meet this obligation if you should have concerns or questions.
When Motorists Should Report a Crash to Law Enforcement
Under certain circumstances, a driver in Decatur who is involved in a car wreck should remain at the scene of the crash and contact law enforcement. These situations include whenever someone is injured or dies at the scene or whenever there is more than $500 in property damage. Failure to stop and contact law enforcement in these circumstances may lead to criminal charges and penalties. The motorist or motorists involved should report such accidents to law enforcement as quickly as possible.
Motorists might also consider contacting law enforcement and reporting an accident if:
- They are involved in a hit-and-run accident and the other motorist has fled
- The other driver and the person become involved in an argument
- The person is unsure if there are injuries or property damage
If a motorist is not sure whether they should contact law enforcement to report an accident, they may consider erring on the side of caution and making a report to law enforcement.
Actions to Take When Reporting a Crash
The Decatur Police Department, the Dekalb County Sheriff’s Office, or the Georgia Highway Patrol may have the jurisdiction to investigate a car crash. Rather than attempting to determine which agency they should call, motorists may simply dial 911. This will connect the motorist with a dispatcher who can then dispatch the appropriate agency to the crash scene.
When reporting a crash, the motorist should provide:
- Their name and phone number (in case they are disconnected from the dispatcher)
- The number of vehicles and individuals involved in the crash
- The location of the wreck
- The number of individuals who are or may be injured
- Whether the vehicles involved in the collision are blocking the roadway
- Whether there are any hazards present like fire or leaking fuel
Based on the information provided, the dispatcher will dispatch law enforcement and other appropriate emergency services. If the motorist who contacted 911 can do so safely, they may wish to look out for responding personnel and direct them to those who are injured or where dangers are.
Decatur Accidents Should be Reported Quickly
Motorists should report accidents involving injuries, death, or more than $500 in property damage immediately. They should not leave the scene of the accident unless directed to do so by a law enforcement officer, taken from the scene by emergency medical personnel, or doing so is essential to protecting one’s life or safety. Even absent injuries or significant property damage, individuals should not delay in reporting a car accident. Law enforcement officers’ reports, which can be important for insurance claims and lawsuits, are best completed while witnesses and involved parties and involved vehicles are still on scene.
Call for Assistance from a Decatur Car Accident Attorney
Individuals who have suffered injuries or property damage in a car wreck may wish to seek counsel from an experienced car accident lawyer in Decatur if they have questions about their legal obligations and rights. An attorney may help persons with reporting a Decatur car accident to the police, with preparing and filing an insurance claim, or pursuing compensation for injuries or losses they sustained. The sooner that people seek legal counsel, the more positive the outcome these individuals might experience.