Road traffic accident investigator

Alternative titles for this job include Collision investigator

Road traffic accident investigators carry out examinations to work out why an accident happened.

Average salary (a year)

£20,000 Starter

to

£40,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 40 variable

You could work

on call on shifts

How to become a Road traffic accident investigator

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly
  • specialist courses run by professional bodies

University

You could get into this job by taking a course with De Montfort University in partnership with AiTS. Courses include:

  • University Certificate of Professional Development (UCPD) Forensic Road Collision Investigation
  • Foundation Degree in Forensic Road Collision Investigation

The UCPD is the starting point if you want to become a forensic road collision investigator and have no experience of investigating road collisions. You would then move on to the foundation degree.

After the foundation degree, you can take the BSc (Hons) Professional Studies in Forensic Road Collision Investigation.

Qualifications are offered on a part-time basis through a mix of online and classroom learning.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above, including English, maths and sometimes a science
  • 2 to 3 A levels, including maths or science, or the UCPD in Forensic Road Collision Investigation for the foundation degree

More information

Work

You could join the police service as an officer or as part of the civilian support staff and work in a road policing department while doing qualifications on the job in traffic collision investigation.

Direct application

You may be able to apply for an investigator job if you have qualifications and several years' experience in engineering, technical testing or health and safety.

Other routes

You could take a private training course in road traffic investigation. It's important to check that the course you take is approved by a recognised awarding body or institution.

More information

Professional and industry bodies

You may find it useful to join an organisation like The Institute of Traffic Accident Investigators, for professional recognition, training opportunities and to make industry contacts.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of public safety and security
  • customer service skills
  • legal knowledge including court procedures and government regulations
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • analytical thinking skills
  • knowledge of psychology
  • knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
  • Being able to use a computer terminal or hand-held device may be beneficial for this job.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties could include:

  • examining vehicles and vehicle parts
  • creating plans of the scene and making time and distance studies
  • working out vehicle speed through the amount of crush damage
  • checking tachograph information on vehicles
  • getting technical information from vehicle manufacturers
  • producing reports
  • acting as an expert witness

Working environment

You could work on the road or in an office.

Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could move into management or work on a freelance or consultancy basis.

Training opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Road traffic accident investigator right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

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