At the scene - Car crashes

car crash self-help guide logoAfter a car crash, the law requires the drivers involved to stop immediately. If someone is injured:

  • you are required to give them help, and
  • you should call 000 if an ambulance is needed.

Drivers involved in a crash need to give their name, address, driver's licence number and car’s registration number (number plate) to anyone who has good reason for asking for those details. If the car belongs to someone else, the driver must also provide the owner's name. 

What to do at the scene of an accident
WARNING

Do not argue about who was to blame. Do not admit you are to blame or offer to pay the cost of damages before getting legal advice. 

Swapping information - what to find out at the scene

  • If possible, take photos of the property damage at the scene and the other driver’s licence
  • Make notes about how the crash occurred
  • Names, addresses and insurance details of other drivers involved
  • Make, colour, model and registration number of other car
  • Names, addresses and phone numbers of witnesses
  • Make notes of your conversations with other people at the scene
  • A sketch of the scene including the street names, intersections and suburb
  • Time and date, road and weather conditions
  • Other relevant information

Reporting the crash

After an accident, you must immediately report the crash to the police if:

  • anyone was hurt, or
  • the property damage is likely to cost more than $3,000 to repair.

You can report the crash to the police at the scene, at a police station or online through the Online Crash Reporting Facility

You may be charged with a criminal offence if you don’t report a crash.

Tow trucks and storage fees

Often tow trucks will come to the scene of an accident. It is your decision whether or not they take your car. 

If you are approached by a tow truck, check the cost of towing and storage, and whether this is covered by your insurance. As storage can be expensive, it is important to know the costs and where they intend to store your car before signing an authority.   

Your insurer may have a preferred towing company and may not cover all the costs if you use another company.

Tow trucks

Ambulances

If a person is injured in a car crash, you are required to help them. You may need to call an ambulance. This is not free for the injured person unless they have ambulance cover. Different fees apply depending on what help is needed.

 

Useful documents

Disclaimer

The information displayed on this page is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have a legal problem, you should see a lawyer. Legal Aid Western Australia aims to provide information that is accurate, however does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information provided on this page or incorporated into it by reference.