Hit-and-run accidents in Kentucky and around the country injure thousands of road users every year, and many of the reckless drivers responsible are never apprehended. Drivers may flee the scene of an accident because they are impaired, wanted by law enforcement, carrying illegal drugs or driving a stolen vehicle, and police efforts to track them down are usually perfunctory unless the accident caused a serious injury or death.
What to Do Immediately After an Accident
If their injuries permit, motorists, pedestrians or cyclists who are struck by a hit-and-run driver should call the police immediately and provide them with a description of the vehicle. They should then gather relevant information such as the names of any witnesses. The most useful information is details that could help police to identify the vehicle such as a full or partial license plate number or distinctive features like body damage or mismatched paint.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
Kentucky is what is known as a no-fault state, which means that motorists struck by a hit-and-run driver can obtain compensation by filing car insurance claims. Many auto policies have uninsured motorist provisions that cover vehicle owners even if they are struck by a hit-and-run driver while they are on foot. If the police do find the driver and charge him or her with leaving the scene of a car accident, hit-and-run victims may also be able to file personal injury lawsuits.
Insurance companies scrutinize auto policy claims closely to ensure that they do not overpay policyholders, and they may be especially cautious when the negligent driver responsible is unidentified. Personal injury attorneys with experience in this area could advocate on behalf of hit-and-run accident victims during negotiations with their insurance providers, and they may also canvass the accident scene for security cameras and witnesses when law enforcement efforts to identify the driver responsible have not produced results.