If you were involved in a car accident in Ohio, the police will need to fill out a traffic crash report. Understandably, you may find the Ohio Public Safety Traffic Crash Report difficult to interpret at first glance. This document created by the Ohio Department of Public Safety not only contains a wealth of information about the accident, but also uses a number of confusing abbreviations and codes to describe what happened.
Before you attempt to make sense of it all, let’s take a look at how to read and interpret the information in your Ohio car accident report.
The First Two Pages of An Ohio Car Accident Report Contains General Information
The first page of the car accident report records basic details such as the driver’s name, address, and vehicle information. It also indicates the type of crash that occurred, the exact location of the accident, and information on the conditions of light, road, and weather. Under the “Crash Severity” section, the officer will need to choose among three options: “Fatal,” “Injury,” and “PDO”—or Property Damage Only.
The second page of the car accident report covers the accident in more detail. It includes descriptions of the damage sustained, Pre Crash Actions, Contributing Circumstances, and the Sequence of Events. The “Hit/Skip Unit” box is marked if the situation is a hit-and-run.
The Next Few Pages of Your Accident Report Will Be More In Depth
The third page of the report contains data on all motorists, non-motorists and occupants, such as names and addresses of the motorists, license plate numbers, vehicle information, and insurance details. This page also indicates whether there is an injury, and if medical attention was given. Other valuable information found in this section are where you were seated at the time of the accident, and whether the driver was tested for drugs or alcohol.
The fourth section of the car accident report, known as the Occupant/Witness Addendum, lists the names and other details of any passengers in the accident and witnesses to the crash. It also lists other information such as their seating position in the accident, and which medical facility they were taken to after the car accident if they sustained injuries.
Why An Ohio Traffic Accident Report Is Important
The Ohio traffic crash report serves as valuable evidence for proving negligence in personal injury cases. In fact, insurance companies generally scrutinize the traffic crash report before determining appropriate compensation for your accident. It is essential, therefore, to understand what it actually says and to ensure that all information is correct.
Learn More About the Information In Your Crash Report With Help From a Car Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it’s highly recommended you consult with an experienced Ohio personal injury lawyer to ensure your rights to full and fair compensation are protected. The Fitch Law Firm has been serving vehicle accident victims throughout Ohio for 30+ years and we may be able to help you. Contact us today for a free initial consultation.
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