(Left to right) Sarnia Police Chief Norm Hansen, Deputy Chief Owen Lockhart, CRC Manager Brent Gillen and Accident Support Services Ltd. Vice President of Insurance Programs Rick Yates stand in Sarnia's new Collision Reporting Centre. June 11, 2019 Photo by Melanie Irwin.

Collision reporting centre now open

Sarnia’s Collision Reporting Centre is officially open for business.

City police were joined by police services board members and representatives of Accident Support Services Ltd. at a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday morning.

Vice President of Insurance Programs Rick Yates said the centres are very successful and a big improvement from a customer service standpoint.

“We can get the citizen off the side of the road, they’re not in the back of a police vehicle doing the report,” said Yates. “They can come in here within 24 to 48 hours, do the report, sit down and have a counselor actually guide them through the process. We don’t adjust, we ask the questions so we can complete the full police report.”

He said staff then go out and document the damage done to the vehicle, that can be parked in a designated area off Water Street.

“We take roughly 12 to 15 pictures, we have a yardstick that measures the height and we compare both parties together and we share that with the insurance provider as well. So, in some cases, they don’t even have to call their insured. The insured always gets their information already and will reach out to them through an email or text message.”

Yates said they’ll also be entering on scene reports for officers, and uploading them the same day.

“For traffic safety, now they have a desktop that they can actually get all the data, know where the hot spots are, what are the top ten intersections here in Sarnia and where should they hold a traffic program,” he said. “They’ll know the time of day, male, female, what was the incident — all of that information — right at their fingertips.”

The reporting centre is located just off the lobby at Sarnia Police Headquarters, at 555 Christina Street North.

It’s open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and closed on weekends and holidays.

Ribbon cutting ceremony at Sarnia's new Collision Reporting Centre. June 11, 2019 Photo by Melanie Irwin