The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that in 2014, there were 3,538 fatal traffic crashes in Texas alone, so chances are, even if you are a safe driver, you will be involved in one eventually. And if you are ever involved in one, you should know if and when you will need to report a car accident in Texas:
In Texas, there is a requirement to report certain car accidents. Texas Transportation Code Title 7: Vehicle and Traffic, Section 550.26 reads, “The operator of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or death of a person or damage to a vehicle to the extent that it cannot be normally and safely driven shall immediately…give notice of the accident…”
The statute continues to read that involved parties must give notice of the accident to one of the following parties:
• The local police department (if the accident was inside a municipality)
• The local police department or the sheriff’s office (if the accident took place less than 100 feet outside the municipality’s borders)
• The sheriff’s office or nearest office to report
The law does not require you to report at the scene of the accident if doing so is not possible. For example, if you do not have a cell phone on you or if you are injured to the point where you cannot report, you must give an accident as soon as it is reasonably possible.
The statute reads that you must give notice “by the quickest means of communication”; typically, that means at the scene of the accident unless circumstances bar that from happening.
Filing a report after a car accident, regardless of severity, is in your best interests. Firstly, as stated above, it is the law in many cases.
In addition to ensuring you have followed the law, it also provides proof that the car accident occurred which you may use as evidence at a later date (i.e., a police report may document how an accident happened and will detail any citations officers issued).
If you have questions about what to do after you have suffered injuries in a car accident, look no further than the legal team at the Law Office of Julie Johnson, PLLC. You can contact our offices for a free, no-obligation consultation about your case now by calling 214-290-8001.