Car crashes happen, and even drivers who haven’t received even a minor traffic ticket in years could cause one. Poor weather conditions, for example, might lead to errors in judgment that result in a minor or serious crash. When involved in an accident on Texas roads, does someone need to report the accident, though?
Texas law and the requirement to report an accident
Imagine that the roads become slick during a light rainstorm. A driver presses down on a car’s brake pedal, but the vehicle skids and rear-ends a bus. Does the accident require a police report? Under Texas law, an accident resulting in $1,000 in apparent damage, injury, or death requires an accident report. A “Texas Peace Officer’s Crash Report” serves as a log detailing the incident. When the police do not become involved, a driver must file a Driver’s Crash Report (CR-2).
Be mindful of the word “apparent.” The officer or a person involved with the accident may assume the damage was $1,000, but an eventual repair estimate may be less or far more. Failure to file a report within the allocated time period could lead to a $1,000 fine.
Leaving the scene of the accident
A driver may panic after hitting another vehicle and decides to “take off.” Doing so constitutes “hit and run,” which could turn out to be disastrous. Leaving the scene of an accident is a felony in Texas. Unlike other states, where the crime is only a misdemeanor when no one is seriously hurt or killed, hit-and-run charges are always felonies.
Witness, photos, or dashcam video might serve as evidence in court. Anyone charged with a felony may need to speak to a criminal defense attorney without delay.
The necessity to file a crash report depends on the seriousness of the accident. Leaving the scene of an accident could lead to criminal charges.