Mistakes Police Commonly Make at Atlanta Car Accident Scenes
When police arrive at the scene of a traffic accident, they often confront a chaotic situation: injured motorists needing emergency treatment, angry drivers disputing who was at fault, wrecked cars blocking the road, traffic backed up. Police have to obtain medical treatment for those who are injured and try to make sense of how an accident occurred and who was responsible.
It’s no wonder that police officers sometimes make mistakes when handling a traffic accident. Still, it’s very frustrating for those involved. You may have noticed multiple errors in the police report describing your accident. But a police error at an accident scene should not prevent you from pursuing a personal injury claim in Atlanta, Georgia.
An experienced accident attorney at Millar & Mixon, LLC is available to review the specific facts of your Georgia car accident, explain your legal options and pursue compensation on your behalf, if appropriate. We have helped many victims of traffic accidents caused by other motorists obtain compensation to move forward after a serious injury.
Police in Georgia are trained to fill out a Georgia uniform accident report. Police are required to write a detailed report reconstructing how a traffic accident occurred. A police report is important in documenting key facts about an accident, including statements from motorists and witnesses, contact information and the investigating officer’s observations about the accident scene. But the police accident report may contain coding errors or errors of fact.
Insurance Claims Adjusters Focus on Atlanta Police Reports
You can purchase a copy of the accident report from BuyCrash.com, a website that contracts with the Georgia Department of Transportation. You may contact the police agency that handled the accident directly, but they generally will refer you to BuyCrash.com. The accident report will be filed by the names of the drivers involved. Contact the officer promptly if the report is wrong and try to clarify the information before the report is finalized.
Do Police Make Mistakes at the Atlanta Car Accident Scene?
Errors generally fall into two categories: errors of fact and disputed statements by witnesses or others involved in a car accident. Errors of fact may range from misspellings of names and addresses of those involved to incorrect insurance information to misidentification of vehicles or drivers.
The accident report overlay contains the number codes used to note who and what factors contributed to an accident. Coding errors such as transposed numbers are quite common on police reports. Officers often check the wrong box or make a clerical error in their haste to complete a report. Some errors are minor and some are more serious. Police can get confused and misidentify which driver was driving the car that caused the accident.
Disputed statements made by other drivers or a witness may be more difficult to change. The police may include statements from the other driver or witnesses that express their opinion of how the accident occurred, even if the accounts conflict with your description of how the accident occurred. You may strongly disagree with the other driver’s account of how an accident occurred and feel it makes the report essentially a false car accident police report. But the conflicting statements are a matter in dispute. Police are unlikely to delete the statement or change these statements unless there are errors of fact.
What Happens if I Go to the Hospital Without a Police Interview?
You may think of other facts later that you wish to add to the police report. Police reports can be amended or expanded with a supplemental report to address errors. You can often get errors of fact corrected by simply providing the officer with the correct information. It is best to contact the police promptly and get the report corrected before it is finalized.
You also can write a statement describing what occurred and ask the officer to attach it to the report as a supplemental record. Whether the officer does so is typically at their discretion.
The police may inaccurately characterize the injuries of those involved in an accident or understate the extent of an accident victim’s injuries. Some injuries take time to appear and are not apparent immediately after an accident. Any descriptions of injuries in a police report are general observations. Police are not trained doctors. They do not do a physical examination of those in a car accident.
How Courts Can Overturn an Error
Mistakes at the scene of an accident can cause problems later when you make a claim for compensation for your injuries. It’s important to be aware of common missteps that police may make at the scene of a traffic accident. A Georgia accident attorney can help you review an accident report and in some cases help you get errors in the report corrected.
Contact Millar and Mixon Law Firm: Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers
At Millar & Mixon, our attorneys focus on helping people who have been injured in car accidents in Georgia caused by the negligence of other drivers deal with issues such as who should pay for the medical bills and how much the case is worth. Contact an attorney at Millar & Mixon for a free evaluation of your accident or use our online contact form to reach an attorney.
Not ready to chat? Use these free resources to help you get the information you need:
For more information, the team at the Millar and Mixon Law Firm, LLC are here to help. With years of experience helping victims of car accidents get the compensation they deserve, the team of attorneys at Millar and Mixon can help you too. Call today!
Car Accident Resources: After a Georgia Car Wreck