How to sketch an auto accident scene

Documenting and sketching the details of a traffic accident is one of the traffic accident safety tips recommended by The Consumer Protection Association of America. The first thing to do is to report the accident to the police. Drawing or sketching a traffic accident scene is something that you may be asked to do later by your insurance company, and perhaps in the police report as well. The police officers on the scene may draw a sketch of the accident as well. The traffic accident sketch needs to be as accurate and truthful as possible. The sketch makes it possible to recreate the circumstances leading up to the accident which helps to determine the cause or reason for the accident.

Take pictures of the accident and accident location with a digital camera or cellphone. Take photographs from as many perspectives as possible, north, south, east, and west. Also take photographs of the damaged vehicles and of any obstacles or debris that may have contributed to the accident.

Jot down all the relevant details on a pad of paper. Write down street names, intersection names, the direction that the vehicle or vehicles were travelling, and identifiable landmarks. It is also important to include the weather conditions, road conditions, and time of the accident.

Get the necessary information from the other driver if a second vehicle was involved. The information includes the driver's name, address, e-mail, telephone number, and insurance information.

Draw a map of the accident scene on a clean piece of paper. Include street names, intersection, and landmarks. Clarify the type of road involved such as two lane, four lane, etc.

Draw the vehicle(s) on the map. Indicate the direction the vehicle(s) were travelling at the time of the accident.

Write a brief description of the accident explaining how the accident occurred. Mention specific details such as the weather and road conditions that may have contributed to the accident.


Always keep a pad and pencil in your car. It always comes in handy. Traffic accident sketching software is available online at numerous sites.

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Things Needed

  • Camera
  • Pen/pencil
  • Paper

About the Author

Robert Russell began writing online professionally in 2010. He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and is currently working on a book project exploring the relationship between art, entertainment and culture. He is the guitar player for the nationally touring cajun/zydeco band Creole Stomp. Russell travels with his laptop and writes many of his articles on the road between gigs.

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