Hit and run accidents on the rise
On behalf of Law Offices of Steven H. Dorne posted in Hit-and-Run Accidents on July 30, 2018.
The AAA has announced that fatalities from hit-and-runs in the U.S. are at record highs. This is based on a recent study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. It announced that there were 2019 people killed in hit-and-run crashes in 2016, which is up 62 percent from 2009 (the last year that had a downward trend in deaths recorded). That number also makes 2016 the deadliest year since AAA started keeping track of the number of fatalities in 1975.
Many victims are pedestrians or cyclistsThe study also found that 65 percent of fatalities were pedestrians or cyclists. It also added that 20 percent of all pedestrian fatalities involved hit-and-run. This is compared to 1 percent of driver fatalities.
Nighttime most dangerous
The study listed New Mexico, Louisiana and Florida as the three most dangerous states. The most dangerous time and location is between midnight and 4 a.m. on roads with lower speeds where pedestrians are likely to cross the street unseen by drivers or in areas with heavy foot traffic. The time of night also makes it easier for suspects to escape undetected.
Drivers are legally obligated to stop
Regardless of the circumstances of the accident, drivers are legally obligated to stop and will face much more serious penalties if they leave the accident scene and are later caught. They should stay and notify authorities, ensuring that timely medical care can perhaps save a life, thus alleviating some of the guilt the driver will feel.
Victims can help themselves
If you or a loved one is a victim of a hit-and-run, it is crucial to work with authorities to help apprehend the suspect. It is also important to hire an attorney who has experience handling these types of personal injury cases. These injuries leave families changed forever, so it is vital to protect your rights to the fullest extent of the law.