The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that the number of hit and run accidents has been on the rise since 2000. Our clients who have been victims of a hit and run driver are always quite frustrated. Most people understand that part of being a responsible driver (and citizen) involves stopping and filing a report if an accident occurs. It is understandable that people are upset when someone attempts to escape responsibility after damaging property and/or causing another person physical harm.
If you are involved in a hit and run car accident, under no circumstances should you try to pursue the other driver yourself. People who flee the scene of an accident are often afraid of being caught driving. It can be because they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol or have previous criminal records or any other reason that make them want to avoid contact with law enforcement. Even if the auto accident did not cause you serious injury, pursuing this type of driver on your own would put you unnecessarily at risk.
It is best to remain at the scene of the accident and record as many details as you can remember. Know that a description of the vehicle, a description of the driver and a sequence of events will be helpful as you file your accident report. The more details you can provide, the more likely it will be that the police can locate the driver at a later date.
What Happens After a Hit and Run?
There are several methods police can use to locate hit and run drivers. Even surveillance video from nearby locations may have caught the driver on tape. Or a witness may come forward with helpful testimony. The driver may be identified when he or she attempts to repair the vehicle or seek treatment for injuries from the accident. Vehicle parts, broken glass even blood samples taken from the scene of the accident may also provide clues. Of course, some drivers who momentarily panicked come to their senses and turn themselves in.
If the police are successful in locating the negligent driver, your claim can proceed just as it would be for any other accident. If the driver is not located, damages may be paid under your policy’s uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage is required by law for all Idaho drivers, unless you requested to waive the coverage in writing. Because it protects you we think you should buy as much uninsured motorists coverage as you can afford.
Hiring an Attorney
An attorney can be of assistance whether the police locate the hit and run driver responsible for your accident or not. The attorneys at Holzer Edwards have more than 40 years of combined experience handling personal injury claims and all services are delivered on a contingency basis. Please give us a call today at (208) 386-9119 or toll-free at (888) 490-0992 for a free consultation.