1. Stop your vehicle.
If you are implicated in an accident that causes injury or the death of anyone, or which causes damage to property or an animal, you are required by law to stop your vehicle.
But if you are a passer-by wanting to assist, and stopping at your own will, make sure that you stop in an area that does not create any obstruction for emergency services to intervene.
2. Help anyone who is hurt.
Find out if anyone is hurt and help them as much as you can. However, if you do not have first aid skills, be careful not to do anything that may make the injury worse.
Call emergency services as soon as possible. You can phone the SAPS on 10111.
3. Find out what the extent of the damage is.
Make an assessment of how much damage has been caused to property.
4. Get all relevant information.
If you are involved in the accident, or helping on an injured person’s behalf, try to get the following information from all parties involved and witnesses:
Full names and ID numbers
Addresses and contact details
Vehicle registration numbers and descriptions
Details of police and traffic officers, ambulance personnel and tow truck personnel.
This information will help with insurance claims, third party claims or Road Accident Fund claims.
5. Report the accident to the police.
The police don’t have to be called to the scene if no one has been hurt, but the accident must be reported – by both drivers – at a police station or traffic office within 24 hours.
6. Do not interfere with the evidence.
If anyone is injured in the accident, the vehicles may not be moved before the police or a traffic officer has arrived and given authorization to do so.
If the accident totally blocks the passage of other vehicles, the vehicle may be moved sufficiently to allow vehicles to pass, but only after you have clearly marked the vehicle positions (for example with chalk or spray paint).
It may be useful to gather other forms of evidence such a video footage or photographs.
7. Be aware of the legal consequences.
There are many criminal charges that can result from a road accident such as reckless driving, culpable homicide in addition to civil claims such as damage to property.
Therefore, those who intervene at an accident must be prepared to make a police statement and or testify in court.