f you don’t stop at the scene of an accident or report an accident you’re involved in, it’s a serious offence. It could end with a hefty fine, a driving ban or even prison.
If you’re involved in an accident, here’s what to do…
If you’re driving, and:
- A person (other than yourself) is injured
- There’s damage to another vehicle or to someone else’s property (including objects on the street like lamps, signs and poles)
- An animal (horse, cattle, ass, mule, sheep, pig, goat or dog) is killed or injured, except in your own vehicle or trailer
Then you must:
- Stop and remain at the scene for a reasonable period.
- Give your details to anyone with reasonable grounds to ask for them. That includes the vehicle registration number, your name and address, and those of the vehicle owner (if different).
- If you don’t exchange details at the scene, you must report the accident at a police station or to a police officer as soon as you can. In any case, report it within 24 hours.
If another person’s injured, you must:
- Show your certificate of insurance, if anyone at the scene has reasonable grounds to see it.
- If you don’t, you must report the accident at a police station or to an officer as soon as you can (and in any case within 24 hours). You’ll need to show your certificate of insurance. If you don’t have it with you, you’ll have 7 days to take it to whichever police station you nominate when you report the accident.
Remember that it’s not enough to report the accident to the police by phone and you can’t ask someone else to report for you.
Dealing with your insurer
Even if you don’t want to claim yourself, you should report the accident to your insurance company within a reasonable time.
At the scene
Collect as much information in photographs and notes – as you can while you’re there.
- Scene – date, time, location, weather conditions, traffic conditions, road markings and signs or signals.
- Vehicles – make, model, registration number, colour, condition, estimated speed, direction, use of lights or indicators, number of passengers.
- People – contact details, description and distinguishing features of driver(s), contact details of passengers, pedestrians or other witnesses, details of any police officers involved.
- Damage – description of the damage to vehicles or property, and any injuries to people involved.