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Reading Your Rhode Island Car Accident Report

If you were involved in a car crash in Rhode Island, the police officer investigating the accident will fill out an accident report (officially known as the Rhode Island Uniform Traffic Crash Report). 

This report is a vital piece of evidence in your case and is used by insurance companies to determine fault. If the investigating officer is asked about the accident during a deposition or at trial, the officer will rely on this report. It’s important to understand the information listed in your crash report and to take immediate steps to correct anything you feel is inaccurate.

Rhode Island Uniform Traffic Crash Report

https://www.nhtsa.gov/sites/nhtsa.dot.gov/files/documents/ri_par_sent_12_5_2013.pdf

Rhode Island Accident Report page 1

Page 1

The top section of the page will include the date, time and location of the crash, as well as the names of their drivers and their information. 

The middle section will include information about the vehicles that were involved, including registration number, state, vehicle identification number (VIN), make, model, color, direction of travel and whether they were towed from the accident scene.

Click here to download a printable PDF of Reading Your Rhode Island Car Accident Report.

The bottom section will include information about the persons involved in the crash – such as passengers, witnesses, pedestrians and bicyclists – will be listed here. It will include information such as sex, date of birth, seat position, whether an air bag was deployed, whether anyone was ejected, any type of protection system in use, whether the person was injured and whether the person was transported to a hospital. Any non-vehicle property damage will also be listed.

The very bottom of the page will list the name and badge number of the reporting officer.  

Rhode Island Accident Report page 2

Page 2

The top section of this page will describe the accident scene, including the type of roadway, the road surface condition, light condition, weather condition, manner of impact, traffic controls and any other contributing circumstances. This section will also note whether the crash involved a school bus or occurred in a construction zone.

The bottom section will have more information about the vehicles involved in the crash, including the type of vehicles, whether they had the seats to transport nine or more people, whether they vehicle were in tow and whether they were special function vehicles. 

Rhode Island Accident Report page 3

Page 3

The top section notes any police, ambulance or fire truck response, the position of the motor vehicles involved at the time of crash and the approximate extent of damage to the vehicles (in dollars).

The middle section notes the “most harmful event” associated with each vehicle in the crash.

The bottom section lists the action taken by each vehicle just prior to the crash, as well as the initial impact area for each vehicle. 

Rhode Island Accident Report page 4

Page 4

This top section lists the sequence of events that led to the collision.

The middle section lists any driver distraction, physical condition or non-motorist safety equipment that played a role in the crash.

If either driver was tested for alcohol or drugs, that information will appear in the bottom section, including the type of test and the results. 

Rhode Island Accident Report page 5

Page 5

The investigating officer will describe how the crash occurred in a written narrative and pictorial diagram. 

Rhode Island Accident Report page 6

Page 6

Information about additional people involved in the crash – such as passengers, witnesses, pedestrians and bicyclists – will be listed here. It will include information such as sex, date of birth, seat position, whether an air bag was deployed, whether anyone was ejected, any type of protection system in use, whether the person was injured and whether the person was transported to a hospital. 

The bottom of the page describes any non-vehicle property damage that occurred.

Rhode Island Accident Report page 7

Page 7

This page includes qualifying information, vehicle information and motor carrier information for any trucks or buses involved in the crash. This includes any truck having a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) or a gross combination weight rating (GCWR) of more than 10,000 pounds, any motor vehicle that seats nine or more people and any vehicle displaying a hazardous materials placard.  

The bottom section lists the sequence of events that led to the collision.

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