What is a Car Accident?
A car accident is essentially a road traffic collision involving a mechanically propelled vehicle on a road or other public area. When such an accident occurs and causes injury or damage to somebody, then a person who has been injured may have a claim for compensation arising from the “car accident”.
As a result, car accidents include incidents involving not just cars but also trucks, motorbikes, bicycles, scooters, and of course pedestrians.
Many states have systems that entitle people injured as a result of car accidents to compensation in circumstances in which they are not at fault for the incident. For instance, a passenger in an at fault vehicle may claim compensation against the compulsory third party insurer of the vehicle that caused the incident.
Each year, the owners of mechanically powered motor vehicles pay registration to cover injuries caused through the negligence of the operator of that vehicle. If you have been injured as a result of a car accident, then it is well worthwhile I seeking advice as to the amount of compensation to which you might be entitled.
Over the years you have probably paid more than $300 per year towards compulsory third party registration of any vehicle you own so there is no reason for you not to claim in circumstances in which you have been injured.
We are expert in that area of law and available to take your enquiry, obligation free, seven days a week.
FAQs About Car Accidents
As with all personal injury claims, filing a compensation claim for a car accident has strict timelines.
If you are looking to make a personal injury claim, you should start the process as soon as possible as you only have 28 days to report the incident to police if they were not at the scene.
Once this has been done, you have up to 3 months to make your claim, although the sooner you get your claim in, the better.
Regardless of whether your accident is minor or major, you should ensure everyone involved (including yourself) are safe. Once you have established that everyone is safe take a deep breath and do not admit fault as this could make claiming compensation more challenging in the future. Call the police, document and assess the damage and call your insurer.
If the car accident involved:
- Serious injury or death
- Suspected involvement of drugs or alcohol, or
- A driver refused or failed to provide their required details
You must report the accident to a police station, or to an attending police officer if applicable.
If you have been involved in a car accident that requires towing of a vehicle, you must report the crash either online through QLD Police, phoning Policelink (131 444) or at your local police station.
Any driver involved in a reportable crash or accident (regardless of fault) is required to report it to the Police. See the question above for more information on what is considered a “reportable crash.”
To make an official report to Police, you will need to include the following information:
- Date and time of the car accident
- The precise location of the car accident
- A description of how the accident occurred
- Your personal details and vehicle details
- Details of the other individuals involved (personal details, vehicle details and witnesses if applicable)
- Details of the damages to vehicle (if applicable)
- Details of injury incurred (if applicable)
- Other crash details that may be relevant (including but not limited to, speed limit, number of lanes, site conditions, etc.)
Your insurance company may request additional details. Contact your insurance company for more information on details they might request.
All reportable car accidents and crashes must be reported to the police within 24 hours of the crash occurring in accordance with Section 287 of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management – Road Rules) Regulation 2009. In the case of exceptional circumstances, you may be required to report the accident as soon as possible.
If you witness a car accident and were not directly involved in the accident, you are not obliged to make a statement or report. If you would like to provide details on what you have witnessed, you should contact Policelink on 131 444 or attend your local Police station.
It is recommended that if you are still at the scene of the crash and any of the following were observed, please contact 000.
- Death or serious injury
- Damage to public infrastructure
- Suspected involvement of drugs, alcohol, or criminal negligence
- Hazards on a roadway (e.g. Oil spills)
- Drivers with an impairment or disability that requires Police assistance
If you have been injured in a car accident, it is important that you and others involved in the incident are safe from more injuries. This might mean that you need to move off the road and away from the accident to stay safe. Once this is done, seek medical attention straight away.
Looking after yourself or others involved in the accident is the most important thing to focus on first. If you are able to, or if you have a family or friend available to assist you, report the accident to police, gather detailed information about the accident and take photos.
It is best to seek legal advice after a car accident when:
- You are unsure who is at fault
- Your car insurance company is not providing you with the coverage owed
- You feel unsure how to make a car accident claim
- You want to increase your chances of a successful car accident claim
Our lawyers are available to give you obligation free advice following a car accident. Call our helpline today.
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