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Freddie Lombard
Freddie Lombard, Attorney
Category: South Africa Law
Satisfied Customers: 2681
Experience:  Practicing attorney and conveyancer with 16 years post article experience.
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What are my options for getting a police case number if the

Customer Question

what are my options for getting a police case number ***** the time since the accident exceeds 24 hours
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: South Africa Law
Expert:  Freddie Lombard replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon,

Thank you for your question. I will try to assist you in answering it today but please feel free to ask as many follow up questions as you like until you are 100% satisfied.

You just have to go and report the accident as soon as possible. Even after the 24 hours have expired - give reasons why it was reported late.

I hope this answered your question.

I know it will take an extra minute of your time to rate my service, but if you do not rate it, I do not get paid by the website so I would really appreciate it if you would be so kind as to rate my service positively. Feel free to ask further question here on this topic at no extra cost if you need more information.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Unfortunately the police station refused to accept the report and said that we had to pay a fine at the traffic authority.
We were unable to locate the specified department and as we live in Cape Town and the accident occurred in Johannesburg whilst en route to the airport this problem arose.
Expert:  Freddie Lombard replied 1 year ago.

What fine are they referring to?

The SAPS is not entitled to refuse to accept a report - it is not within their discretion to do so. However, to stand and argue with a member with an over inflated ego will probably just frustrate you, so I would suggest that you report the accident at a different Police station.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
They referred to AARTO act 46 of 1998.
Apparently not reporting an accident within 24 hours makes you guilty of an infringement.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Freddie Lombard replied 1 year ago.

They are lying to you. The AARTO legislation has no reference to reporting of accidents.

You can read the entire act here.

While it is indeed a requirement to report an accident within 24 hours or on the first business day following the accident, and you can be prosecuted for not reporting the accident, it still does not give the SAPS the right to refuse to open a case and provide you with a case number.

An accident must only be reported within 24 hours if a person was killed or injured in the accident. However, if the report is made after 24 hours have passed, it does not mean that the SAPS can refuse to accept the report.

See this extract on the SAPS website. Section 61(1)(f) says the following:

if he or she has not already furnished the information referred to in paragraph (e) to a traffic officer at the scene of the accident, and unless he or she is incapable of doing so by reason of injuries sustained by him or her in the accident,as soon as is reasonably practicable, and in any case within 24 hours after the occurrence of such accident, report the accident to any police officer at a police station or at any office set aside by a competent authority for use by traffic officer, and there produce his or her driving licence and furnish his or her identity number and such information as is referred to in that paragraph; and

As you can see, there are certain reasons why the accident may be reported after 24 hours.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If you read the last sentence of the Police website it refers to AARTO and the offence?
Expert:  Freddie Lombard replied 1 year ago.

Yes it does. As mentioned, it is an offence/infringement in terms of the National Road Traffic Act. The infringement notice is given in terms of AARTO.

This is however a separate issue from the reporting of the incident. The Police must open the report. They can then also issue you (or the traffic department must) with an AARTO notice. This however, is only if you cannot give a reasonable explanation as to why the accident was not reported within the prescribed time.

Please remember to rate the service.


Expert:  Freddie Lombard replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon,

This is just a quick note to follow up. Did you find my answer helpful? Is there anything else I can assist you with before you rate the service? Please note that I do not get paid if you do not rate.