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The Police Service of Northern Ireland is committed to providing the best possible service to the public in relation to the investigation of road collisions.

However, the Police Service does not investigate road traffic collisions on behalf of insurance companies.

Our primary role is:

• To protect the scene from further collisions.

• To ensure the injured are treated.

• To ensure the free flow of traffic.

• To arrange the recovery of vehicles where appropriate.

• To investigate the collision to determine the cause and whether offences have been committed.

• To provide assistance to those in need at this stressful and sometimes traumatic time.

• To investigate on behalf of the coroner in fatal collisions.

• To ensure safe custody of personal belongings when required.

If you require specific information relating to a collision, call the Police 101 and ask for “OCMT” in the area where the collision occurred.

Frequently Asked Questions

The information below will help answer some of the most frequently asked questions from motorists involved in a road collision.

  • Yes. You must do this as soon as possible and irrespective of whether you wish to make a claim or not.

    Don’t worry if you do not possess all the information that may be required. These details will be provided on request approximately 14 days after the collision by calling the “OCMT” in the District Command Unit for the area where the collision occurred.

  • • Date and time of collision.

    • Names and addresses of all parties.

    • Details of any witnesses.

    Once more, don’t worry if you are unable to supply the insurers with all the information they require. This may be obtained later from the Police after the collision report has been completed. 

  • No. Police investigators are seeking to try and establish the facts about what has happened. However, if it appears that a driver may have committed an offence, they will be informed that they may be prosecuted. This may be verbally at the time, or in writing at a later date.

    The purpose of a prosecution is to find out if someone is guilty of an offence and punish the offender.

  • Prosecutions are recommended by the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) where there is clear evidence of an offence. The PPS is an independent agency responsible for prosecuting cases in court. They will make the decision whether or not to prosecute when they have examined the police report.

    The PPS will only proceed if there is enough evidence for a realistic prospect of a conviction. Decisions are made by PPS’s lawyers who consider the law, the evidence and whether it is in the public interest for a prosecution to be brought. The PPS is guided by the Code for Prosecutors. You can get a copy from their website or by contacting them.

    Public Prosecution Service: PPS Belfast Region/HQ Sections

    • Belfast Chambers, 93 Chichester Street, Belfast, BT1 3JR Telephone: 028 9054 2444 Deaf/Hard of Hearing (SMS): 07795 673 927
    • Foyle Chambers,   35 Limavady Rd, Londonderry BT47 6LP Telephone: 028 7134 0648 Deaf/Hard of Hearing (SMS): 07795 675 338

    PPS Western and Southern Region

    • Omagh Chambers, 2 Townhall Square, High Street, Omagh, BT78 1BL Telephone: 028 8224 4319 Deaf/Hard of Hearing (SMS): 07795 831 188
    • Newry Chambers,  1 Downshire Close,  Newry. BT34 1FD Telephone: 028 3083 2500 Deaf/Hard of Hearing (SMS): 07795 810 114
  • If your collision is likely to result in criminal charges being brought against someone else, you may get help and support from the Victim Support Scheme. They can help you through court procedures and trials.

    Victim Support Belfast

    Foyle Hub Office

    6th Floor, Embassy Building

    3 Strand Road BT48 7BH

    028 7137 0086

    [email protected]


    Belfast Office

    2nd Floor Albany House

    73/74 Great Victoria Street Belfast BT2 7AF

    028 9024 3133

    [email protected]

  • If a court action is to be taken, a person may be issued with a summons which outlines the alleged offence and their requirement to attend court to answer the allegations.

    In certain circumstances a person may be charged at a police station to appear before the court, but this very much depends on the circumstances surrounding the particular case.

  • Depending on the charge, cases are heard in a Magistrates’ Court or Crown Court.

    Serious charges are heard in the Crown Court.

  • No, not under normal circumstances.The officer who attended the collision may have completed a written report at the scene and may have provided you with 8 9 contact details.

    However, this officer will have been part of an emergency response team who react to 999 calls, 24 hours a day. It is vital that members of this team are kept away from non-emergency administrative tasks wherever possible and all such calls should be referred to the “OCMT” in the District Command Unit where the collision occurred.

    Allow at least 14 days from the date of the collision for all information to be gathered.

  • Yes, an abstract from the Police Collision Report will be made available after the investigation has been completed. This may be obtained by your insurers or your legal representatives.

    An administration fee is payable.

  • Any person involved in a collision may initiate civil proceedings. A decision not to prosecute will not prejudice any civil action you may decide to take.

    However, civil claims are the responsibility of the parties involved and their respective insurance companies or legal advisers.

  • If you are injured but don’t require hospital treatment, you should nevertheless seek medical advice from your GP. You may be entitled to make a claim for loss of wages/overtime/damage to your personal belongings/ prescription costs and compensation for any injury you have received.

    Compensation claims for loss or injury are not a matter for the Police. The Police do not support or endorse any company’s products or services.

    If you have been involved in a collision with an uninsured motorist, advice is available through the Motor Insurers Bureau.

  • Publicity stresses the importance of preventing collisions and encourages witnesses to come forward. We always seek to minimise embarrassment and take measures to avoid vulnerable people being identified.

Useful Contacts

DFI Road Safety and Vehicle Regulation Division

Telephone: 02890 540 540


Motor Insurers’ Bureau

Telephone: 01908 830001

Email: [email protected]


BRAKE Road Safety Charity

Telephone: 0808 800 0401


If you have a complaint

If you have concerns about the criminal justice system or you would like to make a suggestion to the authorities, the following details may be of assistance.

Police Ombudsman                                  

New Cathedral Buildings,                           

Writers’ Square, 11 Church Street,                 

Belfast BT1 1PG                                          

Telephone: 028 9082 8600           

Email: [email protected]


Northern Ireland Policing Board

Waterside Tower,

31 Clarendon Road,

Clarendon Dock, Belfast BT1 3BG

Telephone: 028 9040 8500

Email: [email protected]


Public Prosecution Service: PPS Belfast Region/HQ Sections

Belfast Chambers

93 Chichester Street,

Belfast, BT1 3JR

Telephone: 028 9054 2444

Deaf/Hard of Hearing (SMS): 07795 673 927


Foyle Chambers   

35 Limavady Rd,

Londonderry BT47 6LP

Telephone: 028 7134 0648

Deaf/Hard of Hearing (SMS): 07795 675 338

Collision Advice Booklet

Collision booklet

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