Contributing Circumstances Codes

Accident Contributing Circumstances Guide

Understanding your North Carolina Crash Report or DMV-349 requires interpreting the official North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicle codes. This code protocol was created by the NC DMV to assist investigating officers in gathering a large volume of information from any accident scene and processing that data into a manageable format. Your North Carolina Crash Report cannot be interpreted or understood without knowing the code protocol. This guide will provide you with official codes related to the “Contributing Circumstances” boxes No. 14 – 19. By comparing all numbers entered on your accident report in boxes No. 14 – 19 to the corresponding numbers contained in this guide, you may be able to gain a deeper understanding as to whose actions the officer determined to be the cause of the accident.

The investigating officer’s opinion of who caused the accident is possibly the most important information in your case. Please do not proceed any further with your claim unless you are certain that you completely understand the mechanics of this information and how it relates to your claim.

Contributing Circumstances Codes for Boxes No. 14-19:

0 – No contributing circumstances indicated
1 – Disregarded yield sign
2 – Disregarded stop sign
3 – Disregarded other traffic signs
4 – Disregarded traffic signals
5 – Disregarded road markings
6 – Exceeded authorized speed limit
7 – Exceeded safe speed for conditions
8 – Failure to reduce speed
9 – Improper turn
10 – Right turn on red
11 – Crossed center line/going wrong way
12 – Improper lane change
13 – Use of improper lane
14 – Overcorrected/oversteered
15 – Passed stopped school bus
16 – Passed on hill
17 – Passed on curve
18 – Other improper passing
19 – Failed to yield right of way
20 – Inattention
21 – Improper backing
22 – Improper parking
23 – Driver distracted
24 – Improper or no signal
25 – Followed too closely
26 – Operated vehicle in erratic, reckless, careless, negligent or aggressive manner
27 – Swerved or avoided due to wind, slippery surface, vehicle, object, non-motorist
28 – Visibility obstructed
29 – Operated defective equipment
30 – Alcohol use
31 – Drug use
32 – Other* (write in the narrative)
33 – Unable to determine
34 – Unknown
35 – Driver distracted by electronic communication device (cell phone, texting, etc.)
36 – Driver distracted by other electronic device (navigation device, DVD player, etc.)
37 – Driver distracted by other inside the vehicle
38 – Driver distracted by external distraction (outside the vehicle)

For more information on understanding your accident report, please read Understanding Your Accident Report.

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