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District Department of Transportation

What To Do After A Non-Injury Crash?

Getting into a crash can be stressful and chaotic; it’s difficult to remember what to do immediately following a crash. Make sure you know the steps to take after a minor car crash (and what not to do!) so you can get back on the road safely. 

If you are involved in or witness a crash where medical or police assistance is needed OR the vehicles are damaged and cannot be driven, call 9-1-1 IMMEDIATELY. 

Tips Immediately following a Crash:

Stay Calm and Assess the Scene 

  • Keep your cool. 
  • Do not get out of your car if it is unsafe to do so. 
  • Turn on your hazard lights. 
  • Be courteous, ask drivers and others about their well-being and make sure that no one involved has been injured or is in need of medical attention. 

Document the Scene 

  • Take photos of the license plate(s), make, and model of the vehicle(s) involved. 
  • Take photos of the other vehicle(s) damage. 
  • Take photos of your vehicle damage. 
  • Take pictures or document landmarks, street signs, or address markers to identify the crash location. 
  • Take pictures of any property damage or objects at the scene (debris, skids, fallen trees, etc.). 
  • Locate witnesses and document their names and contact information. 

Move Your Vehicle 

  • Move vehicle(s) to help avoid a traffic jam and to keep yourself and your passenger(s) safe.

Exchange Information 

  • Names of drivers and all passengers involved. 
  • Insurance information of all vehicles involved. 
  • Date and Time of crash. 
  • Protect your ID. DO NOT provide your driver’s license number or address.

Contact Your Insurer                     

  • The District of Columbia is a “no-fault” car insurance jurisdiction. The DMV instructs drivers to notify their insurance company in the event of a crash.

Download a copy of the Non-Injury Crash Checklist and Guide to have and use in the event of a crash:

Non-Injury Crash Checklist & Guide