Call Now For A Free Consultation 24/7 (941) 954-1234

What to do if You Witness or are Involved in a Hit and Run Accident

While you are not required by law to stop in the case of a hit and run accident that you witness, it may be helpful for those involved if you stop and assist and give a statement as to what you witnessed. However, most states have a general law that states if you were not at all involved in the accident, you do not have a duty to stop, assist, or give a statement and you cannot face any legal actions if you choose to keep going.

The Role of a Witness

Someone who witnesses a hit and run accident plays a vital role in the scenario because they may be able to offer factual and objective information concerning the details of the incident while also being able to provide an accurate statement about the sequence of events as they witnessed it. All this information may prove to be valuable to the police as well as the victim of the accident. It is also good information that the victim can provide to their insurance company when they file their claim for damages.

What You Should Know

If you do witness a hit and run accident and feel obliged to stop, you should first assess the situation before exiting your own vehicle. If you take note of any serious injuries or damage, you will want to call 911 immediately for assistance and to report what has happened.

Always ensure your own safety before you proceed to help others involved. If someone is injured and there is no immediate threat to their life, you should wait for the paramedics to get there and you want to avoid moving the victim, or you could cause more significant damage.

When the police make it to the scene, you will then be able to give your witness statement. You will also provide your name and address and any other contact details, the time and place the accident occurred, the license plate of the car that fled if you remember it, the vehicle description, a drivers description, and a detailed account of what you saw with as many specific details as you can remember.

Hit and Run with a Parked Car

If you witness a hit and run with a parked car, you can leave a note on the unattended car if you are unable to locate the driver. You can provide them with your contact information and some details of what you witnessed. Place the note securely under the windshield wipers of the car, so it is easily visible when the driver returns.

Your witness statement may prove to make all the difference when it comes to the accident victim’s insurance claim as well as personal injury claim. The more details and evidence they have, the higher their chance of success when it comes to winning their case and receiving the compensation they deserve.

A Few Do Nots

There are also a few things you will want to avoid doing completely if you are a witness to a hit and run. Never chase after the fleeing driver, for example, because this can turn into a more serious situation. Whether you witnessed the accident, or you were the one that was hit, it is never good to leave the scene because you could be compromising the case.

You could lose valuable insight from witnesses and police may also begin to question who is really at fault and if it was really a hit and run in the first place.
Ultimately, it is best to stay calm in this situation and follow proper procedure as you would with any other car accident whether you are the victim or a witness.

Attorney David Goldman has a strong belief that everyone should be treated fairly and those with the means should do what they can to bring justice in all areas of our society. That belief has led him to help Florida's injured from being taken advantage of by corporations and insurance companies. Since 1989 David Goldman has been fighting for the rights of Floridians both as an attorney and by personally supporting our community.

What to do if You Witness or are Involved in a Hit and Run Accident

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

Attorney Case Review
Get The Justice
You Deserve

Free Attorney Consultation

Law offices
Near you

Serving All Of Southwest Florida