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Canadian law requires that drivers involved in a motor vehicle accident must provide assistance to any injured party. If there is serious damage to any vehicle or any personal injury, call 911 or the local emergency number immediately. You must specify whether you want the police, fire and/or ambulance to attend at the scene.

In some cases, if the collision is minor and there are no injuries, the police may not attend the scene. Instead you may be asked to report the incident at a police station. If possible you should obtain a copy of the police report or at least the police incident number in order to proceed with an insurance claim.

Remember that cars involved in minor accidents should be moved off the road and out of the way of traffic, if possible, to avoid further accidents. If you are involved in an accident, do not leave until you have exchanged names, addresses, licence plate numbers and telephone numbers, as well as insurance particulars, with all other drivers involved in the accident. It is also recommended that you obtain the names and phone numbers of witnesses to the accident.

If you leave the scene of an accident in which you are involved, before providing your name and other particulars, you could be charged with an offence known as “leaving the scene of an accident,” more commonly known as “hit and run.”

If you need to have your car towed away from the scene, make sure you know where it is being taken and how much it will cost, before you agree to it being removed. Do not sign any blank form that authorizes unspecified repairs to your vehicle. As soon as possible, notify your insurance company and provide them with the incident number from the police, as well as the names and contact numbers of the other drivers and witnesses involved. It is also helpful to draw a diagram of the scene showing all vehicles and street names.

Contact the public transit organizations, provincial ministries of transportation, provincial motor vehicle licensing offices or insurance associations listed in the telephone book for further details on driving in Canada.

See also: Prepare for the unexpected by understanding your insurance

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