Tucson Police Launch Arizona's First Crash Reporting Center
The Tucson Police Department is working with a Canadian company to handle car crashes when no one is hurt. It’s the first collision reporting center in Arizona and it’s meant to save time and improve safety.
Here’s how it works: if you’re in a crash you call 911. The operator will determine if an officer is needed. If no one’s hurt or driving under the influence, Assistant Chief Kevin Hall said drivers will be directed to the Collision Reporting Center.
It’s run by Accident Support Services International (ASSI) and it’s located at the police substation in midtown Tucson at 22nd Street and Alvernon Way.
“There are no costs to the city or police department,” he said. ”This is all costs covered by the insurers. It allows accidents to be moved from the roadway and handled more quickly. It allows for paperwork to be processed faster for citizens and the insurance companies.”
If a car is disabled, the insurance company will send a tow truck and drivers have up to 72 hours to file reports at the Collision Reporting Center.
ASSI employees will take statements from drivers and passengers and photograph vehicles. Reports are uploaded to a state mandated database and can be immediately forwarded to insurance companies.
In 2011, Tucson stopped sending cops to minor, non-injury crashes because there were too many and too few officers. During that time, Hall said the department lost important data about when and where crashes occur.
The new reporting center will provide customized reports for police to analyze to possible reallocated resources to problem areas.
“Or we can even go out with our engineering folk and see if there are engineering solutions to the problems we’re seeing with the roadways or the traffic lights,” Hall said.
He could not estimate how many drivers will use the Collision Reporting Center on a weekly or monthly basis but said, “Anecdotally, I suspect that this is going to completely overwhelm the current Collision Reporting Center and that we will have to expand.”
After six months Tucson Police and ASSI will evaluate the center and determine what changes or additions should be made.