Hit and run accidents are more common than you might think. Both drivers and pedestrians are victimized by others on the road, putting lives at risk and taking off after they cause damage. It is illegal in Mississippi to leave the scene of an accident, but careless drivers assume they can flee the scene and not be held responsible for what they have done.
If you are involved in an accident and the culprit has fled the scene, what should you do?
Safely Attempt to Identify the Fleeing Driver
If you are physically capable of doing so and it can be done without creating additional risk, look for identifying features as the driver flees the scene. You can write down the license plate number, take note of the color, make, or model of the car, or look for unusual features that could help law enforcement ID the person later. Obviously, if the accident occurred while your vehicle was parked and the driver fled, or you are injured and unable to make an observation, this will be difficult. However, any information you provide to law enforcement increases the likelihood the hit and run driver will be caught.
Gather Information from Witnesses
Again, if you are capable of doing so, ask people in the area of the accident if they saw anything and if they are willing to share their contact information. Law enforcement will take statements from witnesses, but it might be necessary to contact these witnesses later. The information witnesses provide can not only be useful in tracking down the other driver, it can also be used in building a case against that driver in court.
Contact an Attorney
As soon as you can, after receiving medical care, you should contact a personal injury attorney. In the days following the accident, your insurance company will gather information. Unfortunately, your medical and vehicle repair bills will begin to pile up and you could be held financially responsible for an accident that was not your fault. An attorney will fight for the compensation you deserve and will use his or her resources to track down the hit and run driver.from you. There will be a search for the at-fault driver, but insurance companies are not always successful finding hit and run drivers.
There is no reason why you should be punished if an irresponsible driver causes injury or damage and flees the scene. Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer for support fighting for your rights if you are victimized by a hit and run driver.