Someone just hit your car and you're about to pull over to the side of the road when all of a sudden, they just hit the gas pedal and take off. You are now the victim of a hit and run driver. What should you do? For some people, the first instinct might be to chase them down, but that is not safe, especially if your vehicle just sustained damage. Follow these tips instead after a hit and run accident.
Get Off the Road While Keeping Your Eyes Open
It bears repeating: do not try and apprehend or find the hit and run driver yourself. Pull over to a location where you are out of the way of other traffic. If you have a moment in the ensuing chaos, try to pay attention to the details of the vehicle that is driving away from you. What color is it, what model is it? If you are really lucky, perhaps you'll even see the other driver's license plate as they pull away. Make a mental note of this information but again, just stay calm and get off the road.
Contact the Authorities
If anyone is going to try and chase down the culprit, it should be the police. Contact your local police department on your phone as soon as you pull over and are out of harm's way. Give the answering officer any information you might have, such as the color of the vehicle. Give your location as well.
Wait If You Can or Tell the Police You Are Going Somewhere Safer
The police will then respond and may have to decide whether to look for the hit and run driver or come to the scene of the accident first. If they believe they have a chance of catching the culprit, you should probably just stay where you are until the police arrive. You can make a second phone call to your insurance company while you wait. In some cases, the car might still be drivable, and you may want to get off the side of the road. Tell the police first if you are going to pull in to a local gas station or another location.
Contact an Attorney
After all of this is taken care of, you will need a hit and run attorney to help you with your case. In a best case scenario, the cops will find the driver and you can sue him or her for damages. But even if the police don't find the driver right away, your attorney might be able to help you pull footage from the scene or collect witness statements that could help the authorities find the person that hit you.
Contact a hit and run attorney for more information.