Number of Hit and Run Accidents Increasing Rapidly
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento car accident and personal injury lawyer. Hit and runs are illegal and those who commit this act face serious penalties in California. The numbers of hit and run accidents have grown in the past decade. Because it is a common occurrence, knowing how you can help if you are injured in a hit and run accident can assist authorities in finding the driver. In this way, you can recover compensation to pay for the injuries you have suffered as well as time lost at work.
Take Note of the Vehicle
Unless you have been incapacitated by the accident, try and gather as much information as possible after your hit and run. Because a driver that causes a hit and run accident and keeps going is going to move quickly, you have to gather information as soon as possible.
- The number on the vehicle’s license plate is the most important information to have since this identifies the car or truck to authorities.
- Note the make and model and the vehicle’s color. Even though you might not have the license number, this gives police potential cars or trucks to look for in the immediate area.
- Watch the direction the vehicle is going and note it.
- If you can see the driver, pay attention to the race, sex and approximate age and clothing.
- If the vehicle was damaged in the collision with yours, jot down this information too. It can be important as police look for the vehicle.
Phone the Police
Because a hit and run is different than other types of accidents, you will want to contact police as soon as possible with a description of the vehicle. The sooner they start looking, the more likely it is they will find the car.
Take Photographs of the Accident Site
If you have your phone with you, take photos of the accident site, including:
- Tire, skid marks or damage to the roadway
- Any pieces of metal or tire that were left by the fleeing vehicle
- Damage done to your vehicle, including paint from the hit and run car
- Any nearby cameras that might have caught the accident on tape
- Photos of yourself if you suffered visible injuries
Talk to Witnesses
Ask any witnesses to your crash what they saw, and obtain their contact information. They will be able to corroborate your story. If the crash happened in a commercial zone, people inside may have seen the collision too, so check carefully for eye-witnesses to your accident.
Seek Medical Attention
The adrenaline surge you feel just after a car accident can mask symptoms that might arise later and become serious injuries. Go to a doctor or the emergency room, and tell the physician that you were involved in an auto accident. The doctor will document any injuries you have or that arise later, which helps support your claim for compensation.
Call the Insurance Company
Report your hit and run accident to your insurance company. If the driver cannot be located, your own insurance should cover the expenses for your injury and possibly other losses.
Hit and Run Fatalities
According to the American Automobile Association, hit and run fatalities happen every minute around the nation and in 2016 caused 2,049 deaths. This represents a staggering increase of 60 percent since 2009. Each year, the average number of hit and runs is 682,000 and about 65 percent of the fatalities are to bicyclists or pedestrians.
Contact an Attorney
An attorney experienced in vehicular accidents can help you locate a hit and run driver and obtain the compensation you need to pay medical expenses and additional costs. An attorney has the financial resources and ability to locate a hit and run driver. However, time is important because the longer you wait, the more difficult it will be.
Related Articles by Ed Smith Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer in Sacramento
Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer in Sacramento
I’m Ed Smith, a car accident and personal injury lawyer in Sacramento. When you or a family member are injured in a hit and run, an experienced injury lawyer may be able to help. Phone me at (916) 921-6400 for friendly advice, free of cost. You can reach me at (800) 404-5400 if that is more convenient.
I belong to Million Dollar Advocates, a group reserved for trial lawyers with $1 million in client settlements and verdicts.
Find out more about my law firm by visiting the following links:
Photo Attribution: https://pixabay.com/en/accident-hit-and-run-crime-traffic-1497295/
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