Chapter 05 - Accident Reporting

Chapter 05 - Accident Reporting

22.0501 Short title.


This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the “Uniform Accident Reporting Act” for American Samoa.

22.0502 Accidents involving death or personal injuries.


(a) The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or death of any person shall immediately stop such vehicle at the scene of such accident or as close thereto as possible, but shall then forthwith return to and in every event shall remain at the scene of the accident until he has fulfilled the requirements of 22.0504. Every such stop shall be made without obstructing traffic more than is necessary

(b) Any person failing to stop or to comply with these requirements under such circumstances is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be sentenced accordingly.

(c) The Commissioner shall revoke the license or permit to drive of any resident or any nonresident’s operating privilege, of any person so convicted, for the period prescribed under 22.0213.

22.0503 Accident involving damage to vehicles.


The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting only in damage to a vehicle which is driven or attended by any person shall immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close thereto as possible and shall forthwith return to and in every event shall remain at the scene of such accident until he has fulfilled the requirements of 22.0504. Every such stop shall be made without obstructing traffic more than is necessary. Any person failing to stop, or comply with said requirements under such circumstances, shall be guilty of a Class B misdemeanor

22.0504 Duty to give information and render aid.


The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or death of any person or damage to any vehicle which is driven or attended by any person shall give his name, address, and the registration number of the vehicle he is driving and shall upon request and if available exhibit his operator’s or chauffeur’s license to the person struck or the driver or occupant of or person attending any vehicle collided with and shall render to any person injured in such accident reasonable assistance, including the carrying, or the making of arrangements for carrying, of such person to a physician, surgeon, or hospital for medical or surgical treatment if it is apparent that such treatment is necessary or if such carrying is requested by the injured person.

22.0505 Duty upon striking unattended vehicle.


The driver of any vehicle which collides with any vehicle which is unattended shall immediately stop and shall then and there either locate and notify the operator or owner of such vehicle of the name and address of the driver and owner of the vehicle striking the unattended vehicle or shall leave in a conspicuous place in the vehicle struck, a written notice giving the name and address of the driver and of the name of the owner of the vehicle doing the striking and a statement of the circumstance thereof.

22.0506 Duty upon striking fixtures, or other property upon a highway.


The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting only in damage to fixtures or other property legally upon or adjacent to a highway shall take reasonable steps to locate and notify the owner or person in charge of such property of such fact and of his name and address and of the registration number of the vehicle he is driving and shall upon request and if available exhibit his operator’s or chauffeur’s license and shall make report of such accident when and as required in 22.0508.

22.0507 Immediate notice of accidents.


The driver of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or death of any person or property damage to an apparent extent of $100 or more shall immediately by the quickest means of communication give notice of such accident to the Chief.

22.0508 Written reports of accidents, additional information, form of report.


(a) The driver of a vehicle which is in any manner involved in an accident resulting in bodily injury to or death of any person or total property damage to an apparent extent of $100 or more shall, within 24 hours after such accident, forward a written report of such accident to the Chief.

(b) The Chief may require any driver of a vehicle involved in an accident, of which report must be made as provided in this section, to file supplemental reports whenever the original report is insufficient, and may require witnesses of accidents to render reports. The Attorney General may issue process to enforce this obligation and the district court may compel.

(c) Every law enforcement officer who, in the regular course of duty, investigates a motor vehicle accident, of which report must be made as required in this chapter, either at the time of and at the scene of the accident or thereafter by interviewing participants or witnesses shall, within 24 hours after completing the investigation, forward a written report of such accident to the Chief.

22.0509 When driver unable to report-False reports.


(a) An accident report is not required under this chapter from any person who is physically incapable of making such report during the period of such incapacity.

(b) Whenever the driver of a vehicle is physically incapable of giving an immediate notice of an accident as required under 22.0507 and there was another occupant in the vehicle at the time of the accident capable of doing so, such occupant shall make or cause to be given the notice not given by the driver.

(c) Whenever the driver is physically incapable of making a written report of an accident as required under 22.0508, and the driver is not the owner of the vehicle, then the owner of the vehicle involved in the accident shall within 24 hours after learning of the accident, make the report not made by the driver.

(d) Any person who fails to report or gives information in reports as required under 22.0508, or in this section, knowing or having reason to believe that such information is false shall be fined not more than $500, or imprisoned for not more than 6 months, or both.

22.0510 Accident report forms-Penalty.


(a) The Chief shall prepare and, upon request, supply to suitable agencies or individuals forms for required accident reports, appropriate with respect to the persons required to make the report and the purposes to be served. The written reports to be made by persons involved in ac-cidents and by investigating officers shall call for sufficiently detailed information to disclose with references to a traffic accident the causes, conditions then existing, and the persons and vehicles involved.

(b) Every accident report required to be made in writing shall be made on the appropriate form approved by the Chief and shall contain all of the information required therein unless not available.

(c) The Commissioner may suspend the license or permit to drive of any resident and any nonresident operating privilege of any person failing to report an accident as herein provided until the report has been filed. Any person convicted of failing to report an accident by the quickest means of communication or failing to forward a written report as required herein shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and punished by a fine of not more than $25.

22.0511 Clinics or dispensaries to report.


Every physician or other official performing like functions shall on or before the 10th day 31 each month report in writing to the Chief the death of any person or injury to any person during the preceding calendar month as the result of a traffic accident, giving the date and time that the person was received, treated and released at LBJ Tropical Medical Center or other clinic or dispensary.

22.0512 Garages to report.


The person in charge of any garage or repair shop to which is brought any motor vehicle which shows evidence of having been involved in an accident of which report must be made as provided under 22.0508, or struck by any bullet, shall report to the Chief within 24 hours after the motor vehicle is received, giving the engine number, registration number, or the name and address of the owner or operator of that vehicle.

22.0513 Accident reports confidential.


(a) All required accident reports and supplemental reports shall be without prejudice to the individual so reporting and shall be for the confidential use of the Commissioner or other Territorial agencies having use for the records for accident prevention purposes, or for the administration of the laws of this Territory relating to the deposit of security and proof of financial responsibility by persons driving or the owners of motor vehicles, except that the Chief may disclose the identity of a person involved in an accident when that identity is not otherwise known or when the person denies his presence at the accident.

(b) All accident reports and supplemental information filed in connection with the administration of the laws of this Territory relating to the deposit of security or proof of financial responsibility shall be confidential and not open to general public inspection, nor shall copying of lists of the reports be permitted, except, however, that the reports and supplemental information may be examined by any person named therein or by his representative designated in writing.

(c) No report may be used as evidence in any trial, civil or criminal, arising out of an accident, except that the Chief shall furnish upon demand of any person who has, or claims to have, made such a report or upon the demand of any court, a certificate showing that a specified accident report has or has not been made to the chief solely to prove a compliance or a failure to comply with the requirement that such a report be made to the Chief.

22.0514 Commissioner to tabulate and analyze accident reports.


The Commissioner shall tabulate and may analyze all accident reports and shall publish annually or at more frequent intervals statistical information based thereon as to the number and circumstances of traffic accidents.

22.0515 Uniformity of interpretation.


This chapter shall be so interpreted and construed as to effectuate its general purpose to make uniform the law of those States and Territories which enact it.