In the transportation industry, we try to do everything in our power to avoid accidents and mishaps. However, despite all the training, accident still happen. So, what is the proper course of action in the event of an accident? What should you, the driver, do in the event of an accident regardless of fault?
Secure The Scene - Represent Your Company Well
Directly following an accident, the first step must be to stop the vehicle, turn off the engine and set all brakes.
Turn on your emergency flashers, if able, and do not move the vehicle until police authorize you to do so. Put on a high visibility vest and check for immediate dangers, both to yourself and others, prior to exiting the vehicle.
Set your emergency warning signals and protect the scene and do not allow anyone to use flares. Do not move any debris. Ensure that you are protecting yourself and those around you.
Notify The Authorities - Call 911 & Then Your Company
The first call that you, the driver, should make following an accident is 911. Comply with the dispatch officer as they will instruct you on securing the scene. Following the phone call with 911, immediately call your company and inform them that you have just been in an accident.
The dispatch officer will instruct you to stay at the scene, be polite and courteous. It is imperative that you do not admit fault or apologize. By doing this you guarantee you, and your company, liability for the accident whether that is the case or not.
Only help victims if they are drowning or in danger of fire and or burning. If the victim is trapped in their vehicle, you must allow authorities to free them to stop further injury.
Ensure all company documents, shipping papers, inspection book, permit book, logbook, DVIR, annual inspection and other documentation are secured. Have witness cards filled out and complete any company paperwork required.
Cooperate with law enforcement at the scene and provide them, and the others involved, with your name and address, the company name and address and insurance information. Get all needed information as quickly as possible.
Document The Accident - Diagram & Take Lots of Photos
Diagram the scene, showing the direction of travel of each vehicle, the final resting place of each vehicle after the collision and any distinguishing landmarks at the scene. Voice-record your account of the accident on your smartphone or recording device.
Photograph the scene and the roadway from all angles. Move back along the roadway and take photos from your approach and then from the other vehicles' approach to the scene. DO NOT take photos of victims. Be in direct communication with your safety manager or company representative while taking photos to ensure you do not forget anything.
Make no statements to anyone regarding liability or who is in fault in the accident. Do not sign anything regarding responsibility for the accident. If hauling hazardous materials, follow appropriate protocol.
Secure your vehicle from the left and further damage; remain at the scene until all requirements are met.
DO NOT ADMIT GUILT OR APOLOGIZE TO ANYONE!
Your Company Is Required To Conduct Post-Accident Drug & Alcohol Testing If:
There is a fatality
A citation is issued AND there is either a towed vehicle due to disabling damage and/or bodily injury requiring immediate medical treatment away from the scene
Front Range Compliance Services offers an excellent Drug & Alcohol testing program, please call the number below for more information!
If you have questions that have no been answered please call us at (720) 951-5808 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we would be happy to assist you!
Make sure to check out our online DOT Training, DOT University! We currently are offering Reasonable Suspicion for Supervisors, Cargo Securement and Defensive Driving. In the coming months we plan on releasing Pre/Post Trip Inspection, Designated Employer Representative, and Appendix A.
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