The Department of Transport Wants to Let Road Users Report Accidents Online

By Tom Pritchard on at

As things are at the moment, any road accidents need to be reported to the police. Serious accidents require you to call 999, and less serious bumps mean you need to head to a police station within 24 hours. The Department of Transport wants to change that, however, with a new consultation looking into the prospect of letting road users report their accidents online.

The idea is that people have lives and jobs to do, so going down to the police station and waiting to file an accident report might be a huge inconvenience. Seeing as how we live in a 21st century connected society, it's hoped that by giving people the option to do it online they don't have to be inconvenienced. It also means police won't have to spend as much time dealing with it, and can focus their efforts on more important things.

People will still be able to go to the police to file a report in person if they want to, but the online option is there for their convenience. Presumably serious accidents will still require you to call the emergency services, for obvious reasons.

The DoT also has plans to distribute a new Collision Reporting and Sharing System (CRASH) app that can be used to record accidents at the scene. Again the idea is that it saves police time when putting together their reports, and uses GPS data to record an accurate location of the accident in question.

If the DoT gets the go ahead, the new systems won't actually be forced on the police. It's just a way of giving them more options to deal with road accidents, another of which is an automated accident report phone line that can be implemented if the online system is deemed too much of a hassle.

Seeing as how many police forces already allow the public to report crimes online, adding the accident report feature shouldn't be that big a step. But it's the forces that don't have this sort of thing that might prove problematic.

The consultation will run for 12 weeks until 24th April, and you can offer your opinion here. [Gov.uk via Engadget]


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