Getting into a car accident with a driver who illegally flees the scene can leave a person shaken and wondering what to do. Injury claims from hit and run accidents are usually much more complicated than a standard car accident case. If you have been injured in a hit and run accident, you should discuss your case with an experienced Little Rock car accident attorney.
What Should You Do After a Hit and Run Accident?
1. Prioritize Your Safety
You do not want to try to chase down the hit and run driver. Instead, get to a safe place, particularly if your vehicle is still in a traffic lane. Try to make a note of the make and model of the other car, the license plate, and any identifying features of the car, like aftermarket upgrades, dents, or bumper stickers, and the direction the car traveled when the driver fled. If possible, snap a quick photo of the car with your cell phone.
2. Call the Police
You should call the police immediately to maximize the odds that they will catch the hit and run driver. It is illegal to flee the scene of an accident in Arkansas without getting the permission of the police to do so. Even in a minor fender bender, drivers must stop and exchange contact and insurance information. Share with the police all the information you wrote down and show them any photos you were able to take.
Make sure the police write a report that you can give to your insurance company. If the police do not catch the hit and run driver, you might need to seek compensation from your own automobile insurance policy, if you have uninsured motorist coverage. Insurance companies treat hit and run collisions the same as uninsured motorist accidents.
3. Document the Scene
In addition to getting photographs of the other vehicle, you would want to take pictures of the scene, any contributing factors, all damage to your vehicle, and your injuries. Also, you will want to get the names and contact information of any people who might have witnessed the crash.
4. Get Medical Attention
You should go immediately to the emergency room for medical evaluation and treatment of your injuries after the police release you to leave the scene. Even if you do not have visible wounds, some injuries take time to develop noticeable symptoms. Trauma specialists know what to look for when a person has been involved in a collision.
5. Talk to a Personal Injury Lawyer
In a tricky case like a hit and run accident, there will be insurance and liability issues that are more sophisticated than in the typical car accident case. You do not have to sort these things out for yourself or battle the insurance company alone. If you work with an Arkansas personal injury attorney on your car accident claim, the attorney can handle these issues and work with the police to try to catch the other driver. We are happy to offer a free consultation with no obligation. Reach out to our office today.