What To Do in a Hit and Run
You approach a red light and apply the brakes. Just as you come to a stop, you are violently thrown forward by a loud, crunching impact from behind. Your airbag deploys as glass shatters through your car and you are thrust into the bag. In your dizzy haze, as blood trickles down from your broken nose, you hear a screech of tires as the driver who rear ended you takes off on your left. What do you do? Unfortunately, hit and runs happen all the time. There are 682,000 hit and runs every year, according to AAA. Being in a collision is traumatic enough. When the other driver takes off, showing zero concern about your well being, the trauma is exacerbated by anger and a sense of loss in humanity.
Check Your Passengers and Yourself for Injuries
The first thing you need to do in a hit and run crash is check yourself and your passengers for injuries. Do not move a passenger, or third party victim outside of your vehicle, if they are unconscious or complain of serious neck or back pain. Only move them if they are in immediate danger from traffic, fire, or another threat.
Call an Ambulance or the Police
If you or anyone else is seriously injured, call 911 immediately. If you and no one else is in critical danger from an injury, call the police. Give any information you have about the crash, the make and model of the other vehicle, and the license plate number if you were able to see it to the police. Before the police arrive, ask any witnesses to stay at the scene to give testimony to their police, or if they will not wait, ask for their names and phone numbers to give to the police and your attorney to contact.
Do Not Chase the Other Car Down
Despite your anger and shock that the other driver did not stop, if you are involved in a hit and run you should not pursue the other vehicle.
- Your vehicle could be damaged and unsafe to drive;
- Your condition (injuries, high emotions, and shock) could make it unsafe to drive;
- The other driver, assuming they get away, may lie to police and say that you fled the scene;
- The other driver may respond with violence. One in three Florida residents own a firearm, according to CBS News, and many people carry guns in their vehicles.
Report the Collision With Your Insurance Company
When you are able to, be sure to contact your insurance company about the crash. It is best to report collisions within a day or two of the crash if you can. For critically injured victims in the hospital, contacting your insurance company can wait. Often a family member or attorney will take this matter off their hands.
Contact an Orlando Hit and Run Attorney Today
While it may seem hopeless to track down a hit and run driver, law enforcement often find the individual within a matter of days or weeks. To talk to an Orlando auto accident attorney about financial compensation, call the Payer Law today at 407-307-2979 to schedule a free consultation.