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How To Read A Texas Police Accident Report
When filing a personal injury lawsuit, the accident report filled out by the responding police office can be a critical piece of evidence.
You can obtain a copy of your crash report from the Texas Department of Transportation’s website.
However, it can be difficult to understand what you are reading after you obtain the report.
We will take a look below at the pages of a typical Texas Police Accident Report in order to better help you understand what that report says.
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Tx Police Accident Report Page One
Page one will detail some basic information about the crash. This includes the time, date, and location of the accident.
You will also find what county the crash occurred in, what city, the street name, and whether or not the accident occurred at an intersection or in a marked construction zone.
If the accident had a fatality, involved a commercial vehicle like an 18-wheeler, involved a school bus, or you were struck by a hit and run driver, this information will be detailed at the top of the first page.
Page one also has sections detailing driver information, vehicle information, and drug/alcohol information.
The driver information section will detail:
- The names, addresses, and phone numbers of the drivers involved;
- Each driver’s licensing state, driver’s license number, driver’s license type, and status;
- Each driver’s age, ethnicity, and gender.
The vehicle information section will list:
- Make, model and body style of each vehicle involved in the accident;
- Each car’s license plate number;
- Each car’s VIN (Vehicle identification number);
- Each driver’s insurance company and corresponding policy number.
The drug/alcohol information section includes:
- Whether the responding officer administered any sobriety tests;
- The type of specimen taken, if a test was administered;
- Whether any driver refused to take a sobriety test;
- Results of any sobriety tests taken.
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On the second page of the report, you will find if any charges were filed, and, if so, the offender’s information and citation number.
Below this information, the officer will record the time he or she was notified of the crash, what time he or she arrived, and his or her name and badge number.
If a commercial vehicle was involved, page two will list the carrier name, the cargo type, the weight of the truck, the driver’s license class and any permits.
Page two also contains information that is often critical in personal injury litigation. Law enforcement will include a “crash narrative” and diagram.
In the crash narrative, the officer will give his or her opinion on how the accident happened.
The diagram will be a picture of the accident scene and will show the events leading to the crash from the officer’s perspective.
On page three, you will find information on all the passengers and bystanders.
This includes who was sitting where at the time of the accident, seat-belt usage, any airbag deployment, and whether a passenger was killed or ejected.
You will also find more vehicle information page three, including where any vehicle was towed.
There will also be check boxes that reflect what injuries passengers suffered in the crash.
On page four, the officer will record injury information.
This will include where any victims were taken, information on the ambulance unit, and information on the hospital.
If a person was fatally injured in the crash or dies within 30 days of the crash, the date and time of death will recorded, as well.