If anything falls from your vehicle (or any other vehicle) on to the road, stop and retrieve it only if it is safe to do so.
Warning signs or flashing lights. If you see or hear emergency or incident support vehicles in the distance, be aware there may be an incident ahead (see Rule 219). Police officers and traffic officers may be required to work in the carriageway, for example dealing with debris, collisions or conducting rolling road blocks. Police officers will use rear-facing flashing red and blue lights and traffic officers will use rear-facing flashing red and amber lights in these situations. Watch out for such signals, slow down and be prepared to stop. You MUST follow any directions given by police officers or traffic officers as to whether you can safely pass the incident or blockage.
Laws RTA 1988 sects 35 & 163 as amended by TMA sect 6
When passing the scene of an incident or crash do not be distracted or slow down unnecessarily (for example if an incident is on the other side of a dual carriageway). This may cause a collision or traffic congestion, but see Rule 283, below.
If you are involved in a crash or stop to give assistance
- use your hazard warning lights to warn other traffic
- ask drivers to switch off their engines and stop smoking
- arrange for the emergency services to be called immediately with full details of the incident location and any casualties (on a motorway, use the emergency telephone which allows easy location by the emergency services. If you use a mobile phone, first make sure you have identified your location from the marker posts on the side of the hard shoulder)
- move uninjured people away from the vehicles to safety; on a motorway this should, if possible, be well away from the traffic, the hard shoulder and the central reservation
- do not move injured people from their vehicles unless they are in immediate danger from fire or explosion
- do not remove a motorcyclist’s helmet unless it is essential to do so
- be prepared to give first aid
- stay at the scene until emergency services arrive.
If you are involved in any other medical emergency on the motorway you should contact the emergency services in the same way.
Incidents involving dangerous goods (rules 284 to 285)
Vehicles carrying dangerous goods in packages will be marked with plain orange reflective plates. Road tankers and vehicles carrying tank containers of dangerous goods will have hazard warning plates (see ‘Vehicle markings’).
If an incident involves a vehicle containing dangerous goods, follow the advice in Rule 283 and, in particular
- switch off engines and DO NOT SMOKE
- keep well away from the vehicle and do not be tempted to try to rescue casualties as you yourself could become one
- call the emergency services and give as much information as possible about the labels and markings on the vehicle. DO NOT use a mobile phone close to a vehicle carrying flammable loads.
Documentation (rules 286 to 287)
If you are involved in a collision which causes damage or injury to any other person, vehicle, animal or property, you MUST
- give your own and the vehicle owner’s name and address, and the registration number of the vehicle, to anyone having reasonable grounds for requiring them
- if you do not give your name and address at the time of the collision, report it to the police as soon as reasonably practicable, and in any case within 24 hours.
Law RTA 1988 sect 170
If another person is injured and you do not produce your insurance certificate at the time of the crash to a police officer or to anyone having reasonable grounds to request it, you MUST
- report it to the police as soon as possible and in any case within 24 hours
- produce your insurance certificate for the police within seven days.
Law RTA 1988 sect 170