By law, when a crash or collision occurs involving a motor vehicle, all drivers are required to pull over immediately at the crash site, notify law enforcement, and exchange information with other drivers. Unfortunately, there are some drivers who flee the scene. When a hit and run car accidents involve motorists and pedestrians, there are steps you can take to help hold these drivers accountable.
Hit and Run Accidents
Sadly, the news is often filled with stories of car accidents where a victim has been seriously injured or killed, but the driver responsible for the crash flees the scene. This is referred to as a hit and run accident.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), hit and run accidents are responsible for 20 percent of the nearly 5,000 pedestrian accident fatalities which occur in the United States. These accidents also cause serious property damages and injuries for thousands of other motorists, whether in parking lots and on residential streets or on state roads and highways. Traffic safety experts with the NHTSA speculate that illegal activity on the part of the at-fault driver may be part of the reason why they leave the scene. This includes:
- Drivers without a license or insurance
- Those with outstanding warrants
- Having illegal drugs or weapons in the vehicle
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or other substances
Panic over an accident may cause a driver to attempt to evade responsibility, but there are several tools that can help identify and track down the vehicle involved.
Identifying Hit and Run Drivers
When a hit and run accident occurs, either involving a pedestrian or another driver, taking the proper steps immediately after can increase the likelihood of catching the culprit. This includes:
- Notifying state highway patrol or local law enforcement immediately
- Making note of the vehicle make, model, and year, the license plate, and the direction the vehicle was traveling
- Making note of the exact time, date, and place where the hit and run accident occurred
- Identifying and getting contact information for any witnesses at the scene
A description of the vehicle may be sent out over police radio, and local automotive repair shops can be alerted to be on the lookout for the subject. Video recordings and photos from traffic cameras and security monitors at nearby merchants or gas stations can also help further identify the driver, as can publicizing the event in the community.
Call Our Office for Help
A personal injury lawyer, like a personal injury lawyer, can use all of the above as tools and our considerable investigative resources to help bring hit and run drivers to justice. If you have been involved in this type of accident, reach out to our skilled car accident attorneys right away. We can arrange a consultation to discuss the types of compensation you may be entitled to, and to gather the details needed to begin immediately working on your case.