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What to do if you are involved in a car accident in Louisiana


Every Louisiana resident should be aware of their responsibilities if a car accident is caused by their mistake or negligence. A little care on the part of the driver committing the accident can help save lives and minimize damages.

If a driver is involved in any accident which has resulted in injury or death or substantial damage to property, then he or she must inform the nearest police station or sheriff's office as soon as possible by the fastest means of communication available. The driver must provide his identity and the registration number for the vehicle he or she was driving as well as exhibit his or her license to the person in charge of the vehicle that suffered damage.

The driver must also provide all information required by any investigating officer. The driver involved in an accident also needs to forward a report of the accident to the Department of Public Safety and Corrections. If he or she fails to do so, then the driver can be punished with either imprisonment for a maximum of 60 days or a maximum fine of $100, or both.

Everyone who suffered because of the accident must be given the license number of the vehicle and the details of the insurer with whom the vehicle is insured. The police officer investigating the case must also ensure that the driver who caused the accident has provided the injured with their name and address as well as the liability carrier of that vehicle.

All law enforcement officials investigating a car accident need to file a report within 48 hours with the Department of Public Safety and Corrections. Data from these reports can be analyzed in order to understand the cause of each accident thereby implementing more effective means to reduce car accidents. Any person interested in obtaining an accident report can get one for a fee from either the state police or their local police department.

Source: State.LA.us, "RS 32:398," accessed on Jan. 22, 2015

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