Plans unveiled for new service to let driver reports accidents online
31st January 2018
Road traffic accidents could soon be reported to the police online after the Department for Transport opened a public consultation on the idea.
The move would make it quicker and easier for motorists and other road users to alert the police to accidents and also free up police resources.
Many police forces already allow victims to report crimes online and this idea would simply be extended to crashes in a bid to modernise the service.
Transport minister Jesse Norman said the current system for reporting accidents was “out of date [and] takes up considerable amounts of time, increasing queues for reporting crimes”.
More than 130,000 personal injury accidents are reported to the police each year, with most recorded by an officer at the scene. However, around a fifth of these are made at police stations. A further 55,000 damage-only crashes were also reported over the counter in 2015.
The system used by officers to record crashes is also set to be updated. The new Collision Reporting and Sharing System (aka CRASH) will see officers use an app on a handheld device to fill in details of accidents at the scene with accurate locations; another move intended to save time.
Chief constable Anthony Bangham, roads policing lead for the National Police Chiefs’ Council, said: “Online collision reporting will greatly benefit members of the public and also enable officers to deal more quickly with their collision reports, meaning they can spend less time on paperwork and more time on police work,” he commented.
Molly Benton, brand manager at Fuel Card Services, added: “Reporting an accident should not be a hassle so any plans that better serve the public should always be welcomed.”
You can have your say on the proposals at gov.uk/government/consultations/new-ways-to-report-road-accidents-to-the-police.