When you are involved in a collision, it can be difficult to remember all of the details of what happened. A traffic collision report provides an objective and accurate record of the collision, which can be helpful in proving your case to an insurance company.
Traffic collision reports are important for a number of reasons. First and foremost, they provide a record of the events leading up to, during, and after a traffic collision. This information can be used to determine the cause of the collision and assign fault, which is important for insurance purposes and for any legal proceedings that may arise as a result of the collision. Traffic collision reports can also be used to identify trends and patterns in collisions, which can help authorities identify and address the underlying causes of accidents, such as poorly designed roadways or dangerous driving behaviors.
In addition to these practical uses, traffic collision reports are also important for public safety. By documenting the details of a collision, law enforcement agencies can track the severity and frequency of collisions in a given area, and take steps to reduce the risk of future accidents. This can include implementing traffic calming measures, increasing enforcement of traffic laws, and improving roadway infrastructure.
How To Request Traffic Collision Reports
To request a traffic collision report, you will typically need to contact the law enforcement agency that responded to the accident. You can usually find the agency’s contact information on the police report or by searching online for the agency’s website. When you contact the agency, you will need to provide them with information about the collision, including the date, location, and any identifying information such as the case number or the names of the people involved.
You may also need to provide proof of your identity and your relationship to the collision, such as a driver’s license or insurance policy. Some agencies may charge a fee for providing a copy of the collision report. Once you have provided the necessary information and paid any applicable fees, the agency should be able to provide you with a copy of the report..
Requesting CHP Police Reports
To request a traffic collision report from the California Highway Patrol (CHP), you can follow these steps:
- Visit the CHP website at https://www.chp.ca.gov/.
- Click on the “Report Requests” tab in the top menu.
- Click on the “Traffic Accident Reports” link.
- Click on the “Order Traffic Accident Report Online” button.
- Follow the prompts to complete the online request form. You will need to provide the date, time, location, and other details of the collision.
- Pay the required fee using a credit or debit card.
- You will receive an email confirmation of your request and a copy of the report will be mailed to the address you provided.
Alternatively, you can request a traffic collision report in person by visiting the CHP office that covers the area where the collision occurred. You will need to provide identification and pay the required fee in person.
Keep in mind that traffic collision reports are generally not available for immediate release. It can take up to 10 days for the report to be completed and made available to the public.
Information Typically Included in Police Reports
Traffic collision reports generally include a variety of details about the collision, including:
- Date, time, and location of the collision.
- Names, addresses, and other contact information for all drivers and passengers involved in the collision.
- Vehicle make, model, and license plate number for all vehicles involved.
- A description of the collision, including the direction of travel, lane of travel, and type of collision (e.g. rear-end, sideswipe, etc.).
- A diagram of the collision scene, including the location of all vehicles, debris, and other relevant features.
- The weather and road conditions at the time of the collision.
- Any injuries or fatalities that occurred as a result of the collision.
- A description of any damage to vehicles and property.
- Any citations or charges that were issued as a result of the collision.
- Any other relevant information, such as witness statements or photographs.
Keep in mind that the level of detail included in a traffic collision report can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the collision and the agency preparing the report.
Also keep in mind that photographs and videos are usually not included in the traffic collision report, but may be requested. To obtain it, you will need to submit a specific request.
Using Traffic Collision Reports
Submitting a traffic collision report to your insurance company can help you receive the coverage you are entitled to under your policy. The report can provide evidence to support your claim, such as the location and cause of the collision, the extent of any damage to your vehicle, and any injuries or fatalities that occurred. In some cases, the insurance company may require a traffic collision report in order to process your claim.
If you need more information, contact our office.