Montrose, CO — With an eye toward protecting and serving the community more efficiently and effectively, commanders with the Montrose Police Department have created a new directive that will keep patrol officers focused on higher priority calls for service while also giving citizens greater ability to file minor motor vehicle accident reports online.
Under the directive, department patrol officers will only respond to motor vehicle crashes occurring on private property under the following circumstances: serious bodily injury or death, DUI/DUID, reckless driving, or when emergency medical services are summoned to the scene.
All other private property motor vehicle crashes can be reported through the department’s online reporting system found here.
The online system gives the public the option to file a report at a time that is best for them, without having to wait for an officer to respond. Reports can be filed using any internet-connected electronic device. It is also best practice for parties to exchange insurance and contact information at the scene of the accident.
The online system connects the user to the Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles' online accident report system. To use this system, the accident must meet each of the following criteria:
• No fatality or injury requiring medical attention was sustained by any person(s) involved in the accident.
• The accident is not an alleged hit and run or, if it is an alleged hit and run, there is no information on the other driver involved in the accident.
• The accident does not involve damage to any public property other than wildlife.
• No drivers involved in the accident are suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or of having insurance or driver’s license violations.
The intent of this new private property crash response is to increase proactive patrol activities and allow officers to respond to higher priority calls in a more timely manner.
"The Montrose Police Department is always striving to provide outstanding service to our community,” said Montrose Police Sergeant Brian Rumbaugh. “While we understand this change will be a learning curve for our community and our officers, we feel it will allow patrol officers to focus more on higher priority calls and allow them to dedicate more time to proactive patrol activities. We believe that decreasing our response times to higher priority calls and being more attentive to proactive patrol, will further our efforts to decrease property crimes, violent crime, and drug-related crimes."
If assistance is needed in completing an online report, there are kiosks in the lobby of City Hall, located at 433 South First Street, where a customer service technician will be present to assist.
During the summer of 2021, the Montrose Police Department began rolling out a new online reporting system to help officers respond more quickly to higher priority calls. This web-based reporting system, called the Desk Officer Online Reporting System (DORS), allows the public to file certain incident types over the internet at the users' convenience.
These include minor theft, fraud, vehicle trespass, lost property, hit and run, minor private property crashes, vandalism, and others. The new reporting system is found here.
The public will be able to print a temporary copy of their report. Once submitted, the report will be reviewed by police personnel and the submitter will receive a free email copy. The report will then transfer into the Montrose Police Department’s records management system to receive the same investigation, statistical analysis, and retrieval as reports filed in person.
If the public needs help for any in-progress incident, crime, or emergency they can still call WestCo Dispatch at 9-1-1 or the non-emergency line for other matters at 970.249.9110.