Safety Policies and Procedures Manual
Chapter 7: Motor Vehicle Safety

Motor Vehicle Accidents

SPPM 7.20

For more information contact:
   Risk Management Services
   Motor Pool


University personnel are to report any traffic accident involving any vehicle used for official University business in accordance with the following procedure (see also SPPM 7.10).

Immediate Actions

Obtain Medical Aid

Obtain emergency medical aid for any injured persons.

Notify Police

Contact the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction for the accident location.

Within Washington State

When possible, the law enforcement officer should file an official Police Traffic Collision Report (WSP-159). If damages are $1000 or more or if bodily injury has occurred, the officer must file a Washington State Vehicle Collision Report (WSP-161). Both forms are provided by law enforcement agencies within the state of Washington.

Obtain Information

Obtain the following information from other involved parties and witnesses:

  • Names
  • Addresses
  • Telephone numbers
  • Vehicle descriptions
  • License numbers
  • Insurance companies of third parties (names, addresses, telephone numbers)

Notify WSU

Immediately notify the following WSU officials or offices, as appropriate:

  • Driver’s immediate supervisor
  • Risk Management Services; telephone 509-335-6893 or e-mail
  • Motor Pool of Facilities Services, Operations if a Motor Pool vehicle is involved; telephone 509-335-9085

In the event the offices above are closed, such as holidays or weekends, report the event the following business day.

Post-Accident Guidelines

Actions to take after an accident are summarized in the Post Accident Guidelines provided in each University vehicle’s glove box.

Repair Estimates

WSU Pullman Motor Pool Vehicles

Vehicles managed by WSU Pullman Motor Pool that are in need of repair should be returned to Motor Pool as soon as possible. Motor Pool and Risk Management Services then develop and coordinate a repair estimate. The WSU driver submits the accident report to Risk Management Services.

All Other University Vehicles

As soon as possible, the WSU driver obtains two written estimates for repairs to the University vehicle. The driver sends the estimates with the accident report to Risk Management Services.

Glass Repair

WSU Pullman units are to obtain glass repairs from the Motor Pool. Units in other locations obtain two written estimates from local glass repair shops and submit them with the accident report (see below) to Risk Management Services.

Auto Body

Local vendors are to be used for auto body repairs.

Review of Estimates

Risk Management Services reviews the estimates and selects a vendor to provide the repairs.

Accident Report

Drivers report all traffic accidents, regardless of how minor, on the State of Washington Vehicle Accident Report (SF-137).

Note: Paper versions of SF-137 may be accepted by Risk Management Services only in rare circumstances.

 Within two working days, the WSU driver completes the online SF-137 form and provides a PDF copy of the completed form to their supervisor. The supervisor then emails a copy of the completed report to Risk Management Services; email

A hardcopy of the Vehicle Accident Report form is located in the glove compartment of University vehicles for drivers to use as a template for capturing necessary information.

Important! Departments should also maintain a supply of Vehicle Accident Report forms in all department-owned or leased vehicles to be used as templates

Bodily Injury

In the event of bodily injury to WSU employees, University personnel are to complete WSU accident reporting forms as indicated in SPPM 2.24 and 2.30.


A University traveler involved in an accident while driving a privately-owned vehicle on University business is not reimbursed for deductibles and the traveler’s insurance is considered primary (see BPPM 95.11).

Third-Party Claims

A third party who wishes to file a claim against the state of Washington due to an accident with a WSU motor vehicle and/or driver completes a Standard Vehicle Accident Tort Claim Form (SF-138). This form is available from Risk Management.

Accident Review

Risk Management Services reviews motor vehicle accidents involving official University business and provides accident-related information and recommendations to departments as needed or requested.

See SPPM 7.10 for further information.

Revisions:  Oct. 2019 (Rev. 121); Feb. 2006 (Rev. 64); Aug. 2000 (Rev. 35); Dec. 1998 (Rev. 20); Oct. 1991 (Rev. 9).