Regardless as to whether your auto accident was a minor “fender-bender” or a serious and dangerous highway crash, you should ALWAYS call the police to come to the scene of an auto accident.
There are multiple reasons why you should call the police to the scene of an auto accident. First and foremost, the police will help car accident victims get the medical attention they need, and get other emergency services (paramedics, ambulances, EMS, fire and rescue, etc.) to the accident scene. Police will help direct traffic, and make sure other drivers, perhaps distracted or obstructed by the accident, do not cause subsequent car accidents.
In addition to these important non-legal roles the police serve in accidents, however, there are legal reasons why calling the police to your auto accident is critically important.
Should a negligent party cause your auto accident, you might have a legal claim against the negligent driver for your damages, which could include medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. The police will assist you in proving what happened in the accident by preparing a North Carolina accident report (DMV-349), as well as by preparing a driver exchange for you to take with you following the accident.
The accident report (and to a lesser degree, the driver exchange) will provide extremely helpful information to your legal case. The information on an accident report that could help with your legal case includes: the name and address of the negligent driver; the make, year, and VIN number of the vehicle the negligent driver was driving; contributing factors to the accident, including the weather, visibility, and obstructions; names of passengers and witnesses; and importantly, a determination of fault for the accident. In addition to these details, the accident report also contains a helpful diagram and narrative description of the accident, which can help others, like insurance adjusters or jurors, understand precisely how the accident occurred.
In summary, it is always a great idea to have the police come to the scene of your accident. The police will not only assist you after your accident, but the police will help document your accident in an accident report, which can be critical to proving and winning your legal case.
If you have an injury case arising from an auto accident, please feel free to contact Kreger Brodish to schedule a consultation to discuss your case.