The moments immediately following a traffic accident can move quickly and leave the most composed of people wondering what to do. You know to call cops anytime you’re in a bad accident but what if you only got rear-ended and there’s minor damage? Is it totally necessary to call the cops for that? Where’s the line?
So, Should You Call Cops After an Accident?
You should always call the cops after an auto accident, no matter how minor. Calling the cops helps protect you, any others involved in the accident, and those on the road. Let’s learn why calling the cops isn’t only important for your safety – but for your wallet too.
Why You Need to Call the Cops
The number one reason to call the cops is to be certain the situation surrounding your accident is safe. Even small accidents could create traffic nightmares, shut down lanes, or create dangerous situations for you and others on the road.
The second reason to call the cops is to protect yourself. The driver of the other vehicle may be friendly and give you his information, but how do you know that information is accurate? A cop on the scene will add a layer of protection. Your insurance agent might question your statement, or the statement of the other driver, or the other driver’s story could change and all of a sudden – the accident is your fault. A cop’s notes give validity and officialness to any claims to be made and your insurance agent won’t protest a sworn statement from the police. Use the police to protect you from direct danger and possible fraud down the line. Be cooperative with any law enforcement and give as much information as you can.
If there is an ‘accident alert’ in your area you should not call the cops unless there are injuries or if there are drugs or alcohol involved in the wreck. During cases of extreme weather, especially snow and ice, a jurisdiction might go on accident alert. This means that there are not enough officers to respond to fender-benders and other small accidents without injury. If you’re in an accident during accident alert and no one is inured, record the information of any drivers involved, take plenty of pictures, and contact the police once the alert has been called off.
You should call the cops after any auto accident for your sake, the sake of others involved, and for others on the road. The police are there to serve and protect so have them serve and protect you after an accident.