After a minor collision the word is DAM

The new form for drivers involved in minor traffic accidents is called the Declaración de Accidente Menor, which expats can call DAM.

This is a form that is supposed to be used starting Jan. 7 by drivers who are involved in minor mishaps where there are no personal injuries.

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes is suggesting that all drivers print out a copy of this form just in case.

Another requirement for use of the form is that the vehicles involved in the collision are able to move under their own power and that a tow truck is not needed, said the ministry. The drivers involved have to agree to the procedure, too.

The drivers involved fill out duplicate copies of the DAM report giving details on the accident and the identification of the vehicles and individuals involved. That eliminates the need for calling a traffic officer and allows the drivers to move their vehicles out of the traffic flow, said the ministry.

Clearly some expats with limited knowledge of Spanish will be at a disadvantage in such situations.

The forms will be used later when the drivers involved in the collision appear at the local traffic court to report what happened. At the court, officials try conciliation to assess damages. At some point the drivers’ insurance carriers will need a copy.

The Web site with the form

The Web site with the form

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