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Victim of A Hit and Run? Here’s What You Should Do

On Behalf of | Dec 21, 2018 | Car Accidents, Firm News

It is illegal to leave the scene of a collision. Illinois law requires the driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in damage to another vehicle which is driven or attended by any person to immediately stop their vehicle at the scene of the accident or close thereto as possible.

A hit and run is a serious crime, the process of locating the suspected offender can be complicated, time-consuming, and overwhelming. Sometimes the police can help, and sometimes they can’t. Much of that depends on what information you are able to provide them for their investigation.

If you are the victim of a hit and run call the police immediately.

Next, while you are at the scene try your best (never at the expense of your own safety) to do the following:

  • Gather as much information about the accident as possible.
    • Ask any people in the vicinity of your accident if they witnessed the accident and if so take down as much detail as possible, for example:
      • Any details regarding the fleeing vehicle, color, make/model, drivers’ license plate, which state is from, and any other details regarding what they saw, what direction they saw the vehicle coming and going from and just any other details they recall from witnessing the accident
    • Be sure to gather contact information from all of the witnesses you spoke with, ideally taking down all of the information on their drivers’ license and asking for a best number to reach them.
    • Take as many pictures as possible:
      • Make sure to take pictures of the entire scene and not just your own vehicle (although those are important to)
      • Take photos of the surrounding area, the roadway, any skid marks or surrounding property damage, surrounding businesses and be sure to check to see if it appears there is any surrounding surveillance footage. Take at least two pictures of important things, one up close and one far away so the subject of the photo can be seen in detail and in context. For example, if you take a picture of the damage to your car, take a picture up close so the damage can be evaluated in detail and so paint transfer from the car that hit you could be identified – then take a second picture of the same damage but from far away so we know that the first picture was taken of your vehicle and we can then identify where on your vehicle that damage occurred.

Do your best to document the scene of the accident, see if you get any photographs of the vehicle as it leaves the scene, and try to jot down (as soon as possible to best preserve your memory) any details you remember about the car, the driver, any other passengers, or any other distinguishing markers. Take pictures of the entire scene, include all exterior and interior angles of your vehicle, the surrounding location, any surrounding businesses.

Even if we never identify the driver that hit you, your auto insurance may cover your damages. If you have Uninsured Motorist Coverage on your auto policy you can seek to recover your damages through your own coverage. It is very important that the police were called to the scene of the collision and a police report is generated for the collision as proof that an accident happened. We can help you find any and every possible avenue of recovery and discuss them in detail with you as part of our free consultation.

To best protect yourself, call an experienced injury attorney as soon as possible, so they can fight for your rights and conduct a thorough investigation into all possible sources of recovery. Our team at Marker & Crannell will fight for you and get you compensation you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation today!