Public Safety; local police officer on the scene of an accident

Although today’s Law enforcement faces more challenges, controversies and tough issues; they remain a highly trained and skilled workforce who does their best to police the community. At the scene of an accident, an officer of law is often one of the first to arrive. However, due to the large number of automobile accidents and limited number of officers, police aren’t always dispatched. When 911 is called, the dispatcher will take the information provided and determine if the incident requires an officer and/or paramedics. Unless there’s a likelihood that someone has been injured, or the environment poses a danger to others, an officer may not be present in all cases.
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Police officers are often dispatched:

  • When there are injuries
  • When the accident blocks traffic
  • When there is suspected drug or alcohol use
  • When there are other public safety concerns
  • What happens when police arrive?

At the scene of an accident, an officers concern for public safety and helping the injured is top priority. They will immediately assess the situation, call for more assistance if necessary and make sure those involved in the accident are out of danger. Once the scene of the accident is clear, an officer will do an investigation and later write an official accident report based upon their findings.

The police generated accident report will likely include:

  • Police observations regarding the cause of the accident
  • Statements from passengers, drivers and witnesses
  • Written narrative, drawn diagrams and photos
  • Actions taken such as sobriety tests for suspected drug/alcohol use
  • Other details such as vehicle makes and models, weather conditions, etc.

If you, your passengers, and those of the other vehicle are not injured there are things that you can do in the absence of an officer. Gather pertinent information from the other vehicle and driver. Take photos, notes, and make observations of your own in case an unofficial report is needed. Always call your insurance company to report the accident. Remember, even if the police report indicates that the other driver was at fault, an adjuster still has to investigate the claim.


If you are injured by a negligent or incoherent driver of a motor vehicle, try not to move until help arrives. Let the police officer who arrives do the job he is trained for. Your health, and the health and safety of your loved ones should be your focus. After you have received medical attention, take action! Don’t try to take on the insurance company without the consult of an attorney. Insurance companies are trained to deter you from getting the compensation you deserve. Dealing with adjusters, insurance companies who don’t want to pay for the injuries you’ve incurred, and even attempting to interpret an accident report can be very frustrating. Hire an experienced injury lawyer as soon as possible. Contact a reputable Wisconsin personal injury attorney to evaluate the potential of your case.

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