Immediately after being involved in a car crash, the last thing you want to worry about is the other person fleeing the scene. The potential for that happening is, unfortunately, more likely than you might think. Data from a 2018 study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety shows that there’s a hit-and-run accident every minute in the U.S.
If you find yourself to be a victim of a hit-and-run accident, try your best to stay calm and remember to follow the steps listed below.
Check for injuries and make sure you’re safe.
Before you do anything else, check if you or any of your passengers are injured. If there are injuries, call 911 for medical assistance right away. If possible, move your car to a safe place to stay out of traffic and avoid another accident.
Collect all the information you can find.
While everything is still fresh in your mind, write down anything you remember about the other car. This includes license plate number, make and model, color and the direction that they drove off in. Don’t worry if you can’t remember everything, any bit of detail helps.
Take photos of the damage to your car and look for any witnesses. If you can, ask them if they remember anything notable that could help identify the other party and ask if they would give a statement to the police. Also, take a look at your surroundings and make note of any shops to later ask for security camera footage or additional witnesses.
If you haven’t already, call 911 and wait for police to arrive at the scene. After they make their report, ask for a copy in case your insurance needs it as part of your claim.
Contact your insurance.
As soon as the police file their report, call your auto insurance company and file a claim. Typically, you have within 30 days to file a claim, but it’s always best to do it the day of the accident.
It’s possible that your policy covers accidents like this under uninsured motorist property damage coverage and uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage. By having these two coverages in your insurance policy, your vehicle repair costs and medical expenses may be covered by insurance if the driver at fault is uninsured or, in this situation, is unknown.
Reach out to Custodio & Dubey LLP for further assistance.
If you feel unsure of who to turn to for help, contact the skilled Los Angeles personal injury lawyers at Custodio & Dubey LLP. With over 25 years of experience, our lawyers have recovered millions of dollars for individuals and families who were harmed in accidents that could have been prevented.