Support | Suffolk Constabulary

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Support

Support

As a witness or victim of a road incident you would have told investigating officers your recollection of the event.  However, in many cases the event itself would have been deeply upsetting and you may find yourself needing help and advice on how to cope with the aftermath.  Norfolk and Suffolk Constabularies provide such help and support and will put you in touch with a member of our family liaison support staff. They will signpost you to appropriate organisations who are specifically trained to help you with your trauma.  To take advantage of this service please contact the officer who dealt with you after the incident and they will put you in touch with the appropriate person to support you through these difficult times.

Whether you were involved in a collision as a driver, possibly one who may have to go to court, a witness, victim or someone supporting, we can provide details of a service to help you.

What are Family Liaison officers and will I be given one to talk to

Family liaison officers (FLO’s) are police officers and in some cases police staff who are specially trained to deal with family members effected by traumatic events. All Roads Policing officers in the County are trained as FLO’s and will be provided to families where there is a need to do so.

Further information relating specifically to Road Policing FLO’s is found here

I’m having trouble coping following a collision

Initially it would be suggested you make an appointment with your GP to check your general health and whether the medication, if you are taking anything, is right for you at the moment.  Sometimes they have a counsellor connected to the surgery.

Check if there is support at work – sometimes they offer counselling or re assign you to different tasks at work which are not so demanding.  If you have been off sick they may suggest a shorter working day to start with.

Often the reaction to an involvement or witnessing a serious road incident throws up other emotional problems affecting your life that have not been addressed and we will point you to other organisations that will help you cope with them as well.  These include flashbacks, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), difficulty sleeping and fear of returning to driving.

A list of services available can be found further down on this page underneath "What support is available to me". You should be able to find one that meets your needs.

I was injured in a collision

If you have been injured that has another set of emotions to deal with.

Firstly go to your GP who will assess you to see how long you should be off work.   If you are working check with your employer regarding support to help you get back to work.  Keep a diary of how the whole trauma has affected you  - receipts of anything connected to the collision ie  loss of wages, car, car seats which are no longer safe to use, trips to hospital, clothes you have had to throw away due to your injuries.  You may have to make a victim’s personal statement if your insurance company will be making a claim on your behalf, so keeping a diary is very important.

The following organisations provide lists of these solicitors who specialise in collision claims

The Motor Accident Solicitors Society (MASS) www.mass.org.uk  T:0117 925 9604

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) www.apil.org.uk  T:0115 958 0585

A solicitor you are considering using should agree to meet with you for free initially.  You may wish to meet with more than one solicitor to ensure you are choosing the best one for you.

What support is available to me

The police are limited on the support services they can offer. A family liaison officer may provide some support but this can be limited, further details can be found here.

There are a number of organisations and charities who can help depending on the issues you are dealing with. Please look at the details and links for those that best suit your needs.

A number of organisations do not provide a service for those responsible for the collision, if you are currently under investigation please check carefully if the organisation of charity will provide you support.

www.brake.org.uk - Supports/offers information to anyone involved in a road collision. They provide clear advice and support and work with the police to help families and friends following death on the roads in England and Wales.

Health and Mental Wellbeing

Wellbeing Service – You can self refer or your GP can refer you  Call: 0300 123 1503 www.readytochange.org.uk

Samaritans – need to talk?  We’ll listen 08457 90 90 90 or 01603 611311  (24 hours a day)  Email: [email protected] Text: 07725 909090 www.norwichsamaritans.org

SCARD – Support and Care after Road Death and Injury Helpline: 0845 123 5542 (7 days a week 9am-9pm) www.scard.org.uk and www.cadd.org.uk

Sleeping problems – www.moodjuice.scot.nhs.uk/sleepproblems

Coping with flashbacks/nightmares/PTSD www.nhs.uk - Post Traumatic Stress – self help guide

www.nhs.uk - Post Traumatic Stress

www.yanahelp.org - help for those in farming and rural life – if someone close to you is showing signs of depression.

www.matthewproject.org - supporting people with drug and alcohol related issues.

www.aftertrauma.org/get-involved/supported-self-management AfterTrauma was the first UK website launched with the intention of supporting survivors of traumatic injury, and their carers and supporters, to help them understand what has happened to them and the resources available to help them recover.

www.mind.org.uk  - infoline: 0300 123 3393

Mood Mission www.Moodmission.com  - app designed to help people cope with low moods, stress and anxiety

www.headspace.com   meditation and mindfulness – free app

Save a life app – www.scas.nhs.uk

www.theharbourcentre.co.uk - The Harbour Centre can offer you a place of support; provide practical and emotional support to help you recover.  Rape and serious sexual assault can happen to anyone regardless of gender, sexuality, race, religion, age, disability or background.

Help for suicidal thoughts – NHS.uk www.nhs.uk/conditions/suicide

 

Bereavement Support

www.cruse.org.uk - Bereavement support national helpline: 0844 477 9400

www.nelsonsjourney.org.uk - Bereavement support for children in Norfolk – Telephone: 01603 431788

Download free app – search ‘smiles & tears’

www.winstonswish.org.uk - Bereavement support for children nationally.

www.norfolk.gov.uk/community_and_living/coroners

www.childdeathhelpline.org.uk - A freephone service for all those affected by the death of a child.  Freephones – 0800 282 986/0808 800 6019

www.careforthefamily.org.uk - Bereaved Parents’ Network after the loss of a child at any age, and in any circumstances.

 

General Financial and Driving Advice

Car or motorcycle licence – www.gov.uk/government/publications/m1-online-confidential-medical-information 

Bus, coach or lorry licence – www.gov.uk/government/publications/m1v-online-confidential-medical-information

Surrendering your licence – www.gov.uk/giving-up-your-driving-licence

Check if a health condition affects your driving www.gov.uk/health-conditions-and-driving

Medical conditions, disabilities and driving www.gov.uk/driving-medical-conditions

Reapply for a driving licence following a medical condition www.gov.uk/reapply-driving-licence-medical-condition

 

Relationship Advice

Relate – the relationship people in Norfolk and Suffolk www.relatenorfolksuffolk.co.uk

Norfolk: 01603 625333 – Suffolk: 01473 254118

 

Other Support and advice

Organ donation -  www.organdonation.nhs.uk

By phone: 0300 123 23 23

Blood donation -  www.blood.co.uk  - 0300 123 2323

www.gov.uk/highwaycode

www.citizensadvice.org.uk/going-to-court-as-a-witness

I’m worried about driving again

It is very common to feel you can’t get in a car to drive or be a passenger after you have been involved in a serious/fatal collision and to lose your confidence with driving.

It can also be traumatic to pass the place where a collision occurred.

If you are able to then try to drive with a friend or someone you feel comfortable with. Start with a short journey and one you know well.

If you feel you need further help then most driving instructors and schools will be happy to talk to you and arrange a lesson or programme to help you to get back behind the wheel. They will charge for these services.

If you were involved in a Serious or Fatal collision which is being investigated by either the Roads and Armed Policing Team or Serious Collision Investigation Team and would like further support or advice then please send an email to (SCIT EMAIL) with your contact details and put ‘Sally/driving support’ in the subject heading and she will contact you with regards to a referral for support with this.

I’m suffering or have suffered financially after a collision

Keep a diary, if possible, from the beginning of travel expenses, car repair bills, loss of earnings and any other costs directly attributable to the incident.  Injured drivers should make an early record of their feelings at the time and keep photographs of their injuries in case they have to write a victims statement of how it has affected their life.

If you have been injured go to your GP who will assess you to.   If you are working check with your employer regarding support to help you get back to work.  Keep a diary of how the whole trauma has affected you  - receipts of anything connected to the collision ie  loss of wages, car, car seats which are no longer safe to use, trips to hospital, clothes you have had to throw away due to your injuries.  You may have to make a victim’s personal statement if your insurance company will be making a claim on your behalf, so keeping a diary is very important.

To pursue compensation, you need to hire a solicitor.

The following organisations provide lists of these solicitors who specialise in collision claims

The Motor Accident Solicitors Society (MASS) www.mass.org.uk  T:0117 925 9604

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) www.apil.org.uk  T:0115 958 0585

A solicitor you are considering using should agree to meet with you for free initially.  You may wish to meet with more than one solicitor to ensure you are choosing the best one for you.

I’m having flashbacks

If you have been involved in or witnessed a traumatic event you may suffer flashbacks or thoughts about the incident, this is not uncommon and you can get help. Please see the support section on this page where you can find links which will help you understand why this may happen to you and provide help, advice and support to help you.

I’ve lost someone close to me in a collision.

If you have lost a close family member an FLO will be allocated to the family involved. Please see the section on FLO’s here..

If you are not the family member with an FLO or if it is a close friend then it is unlikely that you would be provided an FLO to support and advise you. If this is the case the links in the "What support is available to me" section on this page may help you.

I want to help and support someone who is bereaved

Help and advice is available with a number of charities and organisations.

www.brake.org.uk - Supports/offers information to anyone involved in a road collision. They provide clear advice and support and work with the police to help families and friends following death on the roads in England and Wales

www.cruse.org.uk - Bereavement support national helpline: 0844 477 9400

www.nelsonsjourney.org.uk - Bereavement support for children in Norfolk – Telephone: 01603 431788

Download free app – search ‘smiles & tears’

www.winstonswish.org.uk - Bereavement support for children nationally.

www.norfolk.gov.uk/community_and_living/coroners

www.childdeathhelpline.org.uk - A freephone service for all those affected by the death of a child.  Freephones – 0800 282 986/0808 800 6019

www.careforthefamily.org.uk - Bereaved Parents’ Network after the loss of a child at any age, and in any circumstances.

Do I need to contact DVLA

You will need to contact DVLA if you have a medical condition which requires you to do so. You should speak to your Doctor if your unsure if your medical condition will effect your driving.

You can be fined if you don’t tell DVLA about a condition which effects your driving and your insurance may be invalidated if you do not disclose it to your insurance provider.

Often these is no issue with medical restircitions and it may not adverly effect your insurance so the best advice is to check with your Doctor and insurer.

Advice can be found here https://www.gov.uk/