You probably know somebody or you yourself have been involved in a hit-and-run. But what exactly is it and how should you handle one? Keep reading to find out!
If a driver strikes another vehicle (occupied or not) and leaves the scene without alerting authorities or exchanging information with the other driver, it is considered a hit-and-run. The reasons for a hit and run incident can vary – not wanting to file an insurance claim, being uninsured or unlicensed, illegal substances or devices in the vehicle, or even the at-fault party attempting to hide from law enforcement for some reason.
Regardless of the reason, North Dakota state law requires drivers who are involved in an accident to stop. There can be serious consequences if someone chooses to leave the scene of an accident; especially when another driver is involved. Being involved in an accident can be a scary experience, but below are some tips that might help if you’re involved in a hit-and-run situation. The more details you can give to authorities, the better the chances of finding the other driving and holding them accountable.
- Try to stay calm and park your car in a safe spot.
- Immediately call 911 and request police to the scene.
- Seek medical attention right away if necessary.
- Write down as many details as possible – even if you think you can remember them it’s better to have them documented. Important details may include things like the date, time and conditions of the accident; as well as the color, make, model and license plate numbers of the other vehicle and a physical description of the driver if you saw them.
- Attempt to locate witnesses and get their contact information. Witnesses can be crucial in hit-and-run cases.
- Take photos of scene of the accident and your vehicle.
- Only discuss details of the scene with law enforcement.
Insurance companies can be difficult to deal with in these types of situations. You should report the accident to your own insurance company as soon as possible, but do not make or sign any formal statements. For more information about what to do following an accident, call Maring Williams Law Office at 701.241.4141. Even if there were no injuries involved, we’re happy to provide expertise and help in any way we can.