A hit-and-run can be extraordinarily disorienting and upsetting. You may be tempted to chase the driver who hit you, but you need to resist this impulse.
Taking matters into your own hands can have profound legal and safety implications, so it’s important to understand what to do instead. Today, we’ll discuss why you should never chase after a hit-and-run driver and the alternatives available to you.
Of course, once you’ve recovered a bit from the nightmarish trauma, you also ought to get in touch with a qualified Union City car accident lawyer to secure your rightful compensation.
Things to Do Right After an Accident
It is never a good idea to chase after a hit-and-run driver. Doing so can put yourself and others in danger and can also escalate the situation, potentially leading to further harm.
Here’s what you should do instead.
Bring Your Vehicle to a Halt
You are legally required to stop your vehicle if you are involved in an accident, even if you were only a minor contributor to the accident. Failing to stop can result in criminal charges.
Check Yourself and Others for Injuries
Make sure that you and anyone else involved in the accident are not injured. Call 911 and seek medical attention immediately if anyone is injured.
Photographs and video recordings of the crash scene and the damages sustained will be of much help to you later down the road.
Share Accident Details with the Police
When a police officer comes over to the crash site, provide them with as much information as you can, including the make and model of the other vehicle, their license registration number (or even a part of it), and other notable details.
Get Contact Information from Eyewitnesses
Since the other driver fled the scene, your only option is to reach out to any witnesses present at the scene and get their contact information.
Report the Accident
Report the incident to your insurance company as early as possible. Your insurance company will be able to guide you through the process of making a claim (but don’t finalize anything before consulting your attorney).
Cooperate With the Authorities
The police will investigate the accident, and while it is not guaranteed that the hit-and-run driver will be caught, you must still cooperate with the authorities in good faith. If you were unable to answer some of their questions at the accident scene due to disorientation, you can do so later on.
By following these steps, you can ensure that the authorities are alerted and that you have the information they need to investigate the hit-and-run.
The Dangers of Chasing After a Hit-And-Run Driver
Chasing after a hit-and-run driver can be extremely dangerous for several reasons.
- Escalation of violence: Chasing after a hit-and-run driver can make the situation much more dangerous and potentially escalate into a violent confrontation.
- Reckless driving: In such situations, it’s easy to become careless and engage in dangerous driving behaviors, such as speeding, running red lights, and cutting off other vehicles. This can put you and other drivers on the road at risk.
- Distraction: You may become distracted and miss important cues on the road, such as traffic signals, other vehicles, and pedestrians.
- Lack of information: The other driver may be armed or dangerous; pursuing them could put you in harm’s way. Additionally, you may not have enough information to identify the hit-and-run driver, making your pursuit futile.
It is much safer to stay at the scene of the accident and call 911 to report the hit-and-run.
Here’s Why Staying at the Scene Is Important
Leaving the scene of an accident before the authorities arrive (unless someone needs to be rushed to the hospital) is a crime in many jurisdictions and can result in serious consequences, including fines and jail time.
By staying at the scene and calling the police, you can ensure that the accident is properly documented and that any injuries or damages are attended to. The police will also be able to gather information about the accident and determine who was at fault. This information can be used to help resolve any insurance claims or legal disputes that may arise.
Additionally, staying at the scene and calling the police can help to protect your rights and prevent the other driver, if they are caught, from blaming you for the accident.
Therefore, it’s crucial to stay at the scene and call the police. This will help to ensure that the accident is properly documented, that any injuries or damages are attended to, and that your rights are protected.
Why Do You Need the Other Driver’s Information?
Getting the driver’s information is an important step in the aftermath of a hit-and-run accident. This information can be crucial in helping the authorities identify the driver and holding them accountable for the damages caused by the accident.
If you happen to have a dash cam installed or if you clearly remember their license plate number, it would be a great help to both you and the police.
Here’s why getting the driver’s information is important.
- Legal purposes: The driver’s information is essential for filing a claim for damages or taking legal action against them. This information can also be used as evidence in court if the case goes to trial.
- Insurance purposes: If you have insurance, you will need the driver’s information to file a claim. Your insurance company will use this information to contact the other driver’s insurance company and negotiate a settlement for damages caused by the accident (at this stage, you must get your lawyers involved too).
- Identification of the driver: The driver’s information, such as their name, address, and license plate number, can be used by the authorities to identify the hit-and-run driver and bring them to justice.
A Union City Car Accident Lawyer Will Fight for the Compensation You Deserve!
After a hit-and-run, it is important to contact the offices of Gilbert Sperling, III – a skilled Union City car accident lawyer. A qualified attorney will be able to analyze your case, gather evidence, and work with the police to track down the driver responsible for the accident.
Your lawyer can also help you file a claim with your insurance company for any medical bills and lost wages due to the accident. Your Union City personal injury lawyer will also work to negotiate with the other driver’s insurance company for a fair settlement, if necessary.
We understand the pain and suffering that comes with a hit-and-run, and we are dedicated to helping victims get the compensation they deserve. If you or your loved one has been injured in a hit-and-run accident, please don’t hesitate to contact us today for a free consultation!