What to do if you witness a collision

If you see a collision, the police may ask you to be a witness; they’ll want your name and contact details. Drivers involved in the incident may ask you, too. They may need a witness to make an insurance claim.

Make notes of the incident as soon as you can, so you don’t forget the details; take some pictures with your mobile phone too if it’s safe to do so. Keep the notes; it can take months for a case to be heard in court or settled. Sometimes drivers may try to influence you about who’s to blame for the collision. Be clear on what you saw and don’t take any nonsense from anybody.

General sense:

  • Don’t leave the scene. Your evidence may be needed by the police and for insurance claims.
  • Don’t smoke – in case flammable petrol sets off a fire.
  • Phone 999 if there are casualties, debris in the road, or cars are causing an obstruction, if you can, stay with the casualty to reassure them help is on the way.
  • Make the scene safe for other drivers and keep onlookers back.
  • Is someone injured? Don’t move them unless they are in danger where they are.
  • Get other witnesses together: can anyone do first aid if needed before the emergency services arrive?
  • Lastly, if you’re driving past the scene of a crash, don’t stop and rubberneck. By slowing down, you could cause another incident.
Posted in Driving.

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