Changes in Reporting Minor Accidents

by Jacqueline Sit
NewsWest 9

Starting today, Odessa Police are changing the way they report minor accidents.  Instead, you'll be the person taking care of the paperwork.

"With nearly two dozen officers short, they need your help in reporting minor accidents,     that's because Odessa police will no longer write accident reports, and Captain Chuck Moad says it was a tough choice to make.

"We don't like reducing services we feel like we have to make some hard choices, and prioritize what we do and in this case we're trying to reduce some services in a minor area so that we can provide better services in some major areas," Capt. Chuck Moad with the Odessa Police Department, said.

Moad says the majority of their focus is on crimes and criminals.

"Especially our priority one calls has increase some as well and for the priority one calls, which is the scary calls where people want police there as soon as possible," Moad said.

Last year, nearly half of traffic accidents reported had no injuries involved, and the form officers filled out are mainly used for insurance purpose.

"With that being the case, we felt like if we can reduce the number of accidents we respond to and investigate, keeping in mind it could take an hour to do that, that it would free officers time," Moad said.

If you get into a minor accident, police asks that you fill out this CRB-2 Form, and taking down this information yourself would really help officers save a lot of time.

"We'll still go out there, we'll still make sure people will get their information exchanged, we'll make sure everybody gets on their way safely," Moad said.

Odessa is not the only area with this new procedure; most of the larger cities in the Lone Star State already have this for years now.