What to Do After a Hit and Run Accident
Anytime a car hits a pedestrian it can be devastating. The human body simply was not meant to withstand the forces of a multi ton vehicle, and unlike another car, the human body is not encased in steel. A car on pedestrian accident is made even worse when the driver does not remain at the scene. At that point the accident becomes a hit and run (technically, the term hit and run also applies when a car hits another car, not just when a car hits a pedestrian).
What to Do at the Accident Scene
There are two types of hit and run. In the first, the driver will stop his or her car, get out, speak to you, but then drive off before emergency personnel arrive. In the other type of hit and run, the driver will not stop at all.
If you (or anybody with you) does happen to speak with or interact with the other driver, try to get as much information on the driver and vehicle as possible. This can include a physical description, as well as a description of his or her vehicle. Take note of any unique features on the car, and some or all of the license plate.
It is rare for someone who wants to drive off to even show you his or her driver’s license, but needless to say, take a photo of the license if it’s offered.
The car that hit you may have lost pieces. Make sure not to move those pieces, and make sure that they are not taken by anyone else. Also take note of, and photograph, any damage or marks to the roadway or curb made by the vehicle.
Do not chase after (or have anyone else chase) someone who drives away. The last thing you need is to have a high-speed chase or violent incident occur.
Hitting a pedestrian and fleeing the scene is a criminal offense. This means that the police will be anxious to find out who hit you and will want as much information from you as they can get.
Insurance Will Help
Even if the other driver is not located, your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance will help you pay some of your medical bills, depending on your deductible. Other coverages that you may have that apply to your car insurance, such as medical payments, will also help, regardless of whether the other driver is ever found.
Beyond what PIP provides, you will have to rely on uninsured motorist coverage (UM) to pay additional damages. UM can assert any defenses that the other driver would have asserted, had he or she been identified. The UM carrier will want to know as many details about the accident as you can provide.
This is why purchasing UM insurance is important to have. Your UM carrier will “stand in the shoes” of the driver who hit you, and defend the case as the other driver would have defended it.
Don’t be a victim. Get help with your injury case. Contact the West Palm Beach personal injury attorneys at the Celeste Law Firm today for help if you have been injured in any kind of accident.