If you’ve ever been involved in a hit and run accident, you understand how stressful it can be. The initial shock is amplified knowing that someone fled, unconcerned about the damage they caused. For those wondering about how to respond to a hit and run, the following information is useful.
Hit and Run Accidents Are Common
A full 11 percent of auto crashes involve a driver who flees the scene. This statistic is even higher in large cities, and Cleveland, along with the rest of Ohio, clocked over 6,000 injuries related to hit and run drivers in 2015.
While the law remains the same, the outcomes of a hit and run vary dependent on the vehicle involved. If a motorcycle driver is injured, for instance, they could face life-threatening injuries. A hit and run accident with parked cars, on the other hand, typically only results in property damage.
Hit and Run Consequences
Anyone fleeing the scene of an accident can face serious consequences. In Ohio, for instance, failure to stop can result in large fines, time in jail and a suspended driver’s license. These repercussions increase if someone was seriously injured.
Many hit and run accidents occur because the driver will get in trouble if caught by police. They could be drunk or have a warrant for their arrest. This means you should never attempt to chase down a hit and run driver.
Step by Step After Hit and Run
You’re probably thinking that you need to call a hit and run accident lawyer if the responsible party fled the scene. This is correct, but there are several other steps you should take first.
- Write down license plate number if possible
- Get witness information if possible
- Report the incident to police
- Take pictures of scene
- Go to hospital if injured
- Fill out accident report
After taking these steps, contacting a car accident lawyer is essential. Insurance companies don’t like to pay when their drivers didn’t cause the accident, so legal help is likely necessary.
When to Contact Hit and Run Lawyers
Contact an attorney following any hit and run accident. Even if you believe the fleeing driver wasn’t to blame, it’s important to talk to a lawyer since you may not be legally at fault. This could greatly increase your chance of compensation.
Additionally, remember that hit and run drivers of parked cars face the same legal consequences. If you’re involved in a hit and run, you may be able to sue your insurer for acting in bad faith or hold the driver accountable for more than just damage and medical bills. This could far exceed any hit and run lawyer costs you’re worried about.
If you were injured by a hit and run driver, a motor vehicle accident lawyer is your best chance at compensation.