NSW police report: When to call the police after a crash

Experiencing a motor vehicle accident can be traumatic and the first thing you may be concerned with is attending to your own safety and the safety of others.

Whether an ambulance needs to be called or not, you may wonder if the police also need to be involved. In New South Wales, you don’t have to call the police for minor car accidents. However, in more serious situations the NSW police will report to the scene of the accident.

There are three main situations when police are required:

  • when there are fatalities or injuries
  • a driver is intoxicated with alcohol or drugs
  • the drivers fail to exchange licence and contact details.

When someone is injured, trapped or killed

If someone is injured, trapped or killed in a car accident then the police need to be called along with the ambulance. Call 000 for emergency services.

All crashes involving injuries are assigned an ‘event number’ for a NSW police report. This report is important for insurance and when it comes time to make a claim for compensation.

If a person only realises that they were injured in the crash after leaving the scene, they can still make a NSW police report by calling their assistance line on 131 444.

Driving under the influence

It’s a serious offence to drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Driving under the influence remains a major road safety problem and the problem is not just limited to alcohol but also illicit drugs like speed, meth, and heroin. If you suspect that one of the drivers in a car accident is under the influence of drugs or alcohol you should call the police.

Minor accidents when there is car damage only

For minor car accidents, police do not need to be called when there is only a small amount of damage to a car or other vehicles and no one is hurt. Insurance companies do not need a NSW police report number when no cars are towed away from the scene.

However, if a car or cars are towed away from the accident scene, then the drivers are required to report the crash on the police assistance line 131 444. The caller will be given a NSW police report number at the end of the call.

Failure to exchange details

Drivers are required to exchange their details after an accident. If one or more drivers in a car accident fails to exchange their licence and contact details then the police should be called and the incident reported.

Other situations when the police are required at the scene of an accident

There may be other situations where the police should be called to the scene of a motor vehicle accident. These include when:

  • there is aggressive road rage or criminal behaviour taking place
  • when the traffic needs to be directed around the scene of the crash
  • there are hazards on the road that need to be dealt with like oil or chemical spills.

Unsure of how to make a compensation claim? Call our lawyers

Coping with the aftermath of a car crash can be stressful and upsetting especially if you or a loved one has been seriously injured. And dealing with the complex procedures for making a compensation claim can add to the anxiety. Our senior compensation lawyers are here to help you every step of the way. If you need to talk to an expert, call us today.

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