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Accident

Investigation
Patrol Officer Responsibilities

Accident Call Initiated

You should know…
Location
 Severity
 Whether traffic or highway is blocked

Make a decision on route

use lights AND siren  If no.04  347. respond quickly but within all rules of the road   Adhere to all statutes: 346.38   Follow all department policies .Response to the Scene  Determine if there is a true emergency If yes.03  346.

Be Alert!  Hit and run vehicles fleeing away from the accident Excessive speed  Equipment malfunctions  Damaged parts   If possible. call out 28 and description but continue to the accident if you are the primary officer .

Arrival at the Scene    Protect the scene Be close Be alert for hazards Spills  Gases  Wires   Stay UPWIND AND UPHILL if there are potential hazmat danger!!!! .

or hazmat exists Ambulance if people appear injured or killed (one ambulance for every injured person) Wreckers Rescue .First Assessment   Look around Request additional…  Officers if       There is more than one vehicle involved Roads need to be closed and traffic re-routed Fire if smoke. spills.

treat serious injuries first Turn over treatment to EMS with a report .Care for the Injured     This is the primary responsibility of the responding officer Protecting the scene from secondary crashes must be done first Triage first.

Determine if Hit and Run  Obtain description of vehicle Use CYMBAL  Get direction of travel and time of accident  Description of driver and occupants if possible  Don’t forget the license plate!!!    Send out ATL Preserve all evidence .

Locate and Interview Accident Participants  Interview all drivers. or other INVOLVED in the accident Keep them separated  Ask each. “What happened?”  Get basic information from all (name. pedestrians..)  Keep an open mind   Tell each party that you will be talking with them again to follow up . etc. DOB.

Specific Questions   Remember to maintain constitutional issues Determine:       OWI? Injured? Tired? Physically disabled? Suicidal or other unusual behavior? Also ask:    Insurance information Seat belt Occupant identities .

they took Condition of the vehicle Look inside the vehicle later for evidence of Inattentive Driving or OWI .Interview Hints    Interview separately Do the interviews as soon as possible after the accident Question them regarding        Their trip plan When they first perceived danger What he or she was doing just before the accident How fast were they going What evasive action if any.

Interview Witnesses  Ask each of them open-ended questions “What happened?” or “What did you see?”  Where were you  What called your attention to the accident?  How fast were the vehicles going?  Did you see brake lights?  Did you hear braking noise?   Remember to get basic information for follow-up interviews and for court as most will be anxious to get going! .

the evidence may be disappearing so you may have to act quickly to preserve it Skid marks Straight skids  Shadow skids  Other skids    General vehicle crush Debris on the roadway .Check the Scene for Physical Evidence   In some situations.

Evidence continues       Gouges on the roadway Fluids Traffic signs and devices Lamp examination Road conditions OWI and drug use evidence .

Specific Vehicle Evidence    Contact damage Induced damage (typically crumbling or broken glass) Vehicle equipment violations Brakes  Lights  Tires    Light switch position Airbag deployment .

Photograph the Scene    Seriousness determines need for photos Prior to vehicles being moved if possible Photograph         Overall scene Vehicle damage Traffic signs and controls Road gouges Skid marks Debris Injured parties or bodies Video record all serious or fatal accidents .

shoulders. ditches. etc… . signs.Measure the Scene   Use the XY coordinate system Complete a field sketch Outline the roadway edges first  Add vehicles final resting points (if known)  Add skid marks  Add other evidence   Measure all evidence locations and roadway features including crosswalks.

Clear Up Accident Scene     Tow all vehicles Clean up all glass and parts Open road to traffic Make arrangements to transport parties left without vehicles .

Take Appropriate Enforcement Action Arrest  Cite party most at fault for the violation that most contributed to the crash  Almost all accidents should result in a citation for the party that was at fault  Remember to consider all factors in the investigation NOTE!!!! Don’t investigate accidents where there is a conflict of interest  .

Complete Accident Report  Note the criteria for reportable accidents         $1000 vehicles (including gov vehicles) $1000 personal property $200 government property Injury Fatality Complete within 10 days Include diagram Possible contributing factors are some of the most important fields… .

Questions??? .