New Mexico State Police, county sheriff’s departments and municipal police departments respond to motor vehicle accidents every day. The reports written by law enforcement officers at the scene could contribute to the outcome of personal injury insurance claims and lawsuits. They collect details about the drivers involved and have the authority to make determinations about fault and write traffic citations. When they detect intoxication, they also arrest individuals immediately.
Always call police when people are injured
One of the very first things you need to do after a motor vehicle collision is to check yourself and passengers for injuries. If you are able, you should make contact with the people in the other vehicle or vehicles to see if they need medical attention.
Although you can call 911 even if injuries are not present because you want a police report, the matter becomes urgent when people are hurt. The police can expedite the response of emergency personnel to the scene. Their duties include diverting traffic to clean up accident scenes and helping medical first responders attend crash victims.
What to do if police do not respond to your crash
You or someone close to you needs to find the local law enforcement agency responsible for the location where the accident happened. You can file an official report at the local office. The agency’s website typically has a reporting form as well.
Sometimes local law enforcement have their hands full and cannot respond if no injuries are reported. However, you cannot be certain you did not suffer any harm until you receive a medical evaluation. Symptoms of a traumatic brain injury or soft-tissue injuries to the neck or back can take hours or days to appear.
Police report serves as official documentation
The police report written at the scene or created later at the agency office proves to an insurance company that the accident occurred. It establishes the place and time of the crash and the individuals involved. The absence of a police report could undermine your ability to recover damages.