Title 31
Motor and Other Vehicles

Chapter 26
Accidents and Accident Reports

R.I. Gen. Laws § 31-26-9

§ 31-26-9. Reports by law enforcement officers.

(a) Every law enforcement officer who, in the regular course of duty, investigates a motor vehicle accident of which a report must be made as required and in accordance with subsections (a), (b), (d) and (e) of this section, either at the time of and at the scene of the accident or thereafter by interviewing participants or witnesses shall, effective January 1, 2003, submit all investigated and reportable accident reports to the department of transportation electronically. The form utilized shall be the newly revised accident form developed by the department of transportation in cooperation with the division of motor vehicles. The electronic accident report shall be transferred using the Rhode Island Accident Data Export Manager over the Rhode Island Law Enforcement Telecommunication System (RILETS) to the department of transportation.

(b) The law enforcement agency or its contracted agent shall transmit an electronic accident report to the department of transportation within fourteen (14) days of the investigation or preparing of the report and may maintain a copy locally.

(c) The driver of a vehicle that is involved in an accident shall submit the motorist accident report form to the division of motor vehicles within twenty-one (21) days of the accident, pursuant to § 31-26-6.

(d) Any accident occurring on a highway or upon premises open to the public resulting in injury or death to any person or damage to property equal to or in excess of one thousand dollars ($1,000) is subject to the reporting requirements. In addition, the division of motor vehicles will take action on reported accidents in excess of five hundred dollars ($500) for compliance with the state financial responsibility law pursuant to § 31-26-6.

(e) The department of transportation shall serve as the accident data repository agency for the electronic accident reports submitted by the law enforcement agencies in the state, and the division of motor vehicles shall remain as the repository agency for all motorist accident reports. “Personal information,” as defined in § 11-49.3-3, and associated with accident reports submitted pursuant to this section shall remain privileged except that the information may be provided to an involved party to the accident or their legal representative, an insurance company, or insurance-support organization or in accordance with Rhode Island general laws.

History of Section.
P.L. 1950, ch. 2595, art. 23, § 6; G.L. 1956, § 31-26-9; P.L. 2001, ch. 166, § 1; P.L. 2021, ch. 418, § 1, effective July 14, 2021; P.L. 2021, ch. 419, § 1, effective July 14, 2021.