Posts tagged hit and run accidents

How Do I Locate the Hit-and-Run Driver That Caused My Accident?

January 10, 2019 Auto Accidents

Most of the time, drivers involved in a car accident will stop and stay on the scene until police arrive.

car accident sceneMost of the time, drivers involved in a car accident will stop and stay on the scene until police arrive.

But sometimes, a driver involved in an accident speeds away before either the police or other drivers can obtain their name or insurance. They may not even get a good glimpse of the driver. It’s called a hit-and-run accident. Drivers might do this because they are frightened of the consequences, impaired by alcohol or drugs, or even because they are afraid of losing their licenses or having an accident on their record.

But it’s often important to find the hit-and-run driver, especially if that driver was responsible for the accident.

Here are steps to take to find the hit-and-run driver.

1. Call the police

Police should be called in any accident, and a hit and run is no exception. An officer will get the information about what happened and file a police report. The police report is an important piece of information for your insurance carrier, so be sure to have it with you when you call your insurance company.

The police can also try to contact witnesses. Passersby, other motorists, or people in nearby houses can all have seen something that could identify the car (such as a license plate) or, failing that, could identify the car or the driver.

The police can match a full license plate to the driver. From there, the driver can be located, as the driver’s address and contact information will be associated with the license plate. Police can also attempt to identify the car if they have enough information about it.

Police may also know if there are surveillance cameras on streets, traffic lights, or other locations nearby. If there are, surveillance cameras can be used to identify the license plate. If there are cameras but they didn’t capture the entire license plate, they may have captured other identifying information that will help the police locate the driver.

2. Ask witnesses

You can also ask people who were around at the time of the accident if they saw the car, its license plate, or identifying details of the car or the driver. A hit-and-run driver may speed, for example, or stop very quickly to pick up a waiting passenger. They can give you clues that you could use to take to the police.

If you were in a mall, for example, you can canvass businesses to ask if anyone saw anything about the accident.

When You Need a Seasoned Car Accident Attorney in Southern California

Leaving the scene of an accident is a crime. If you or a loved one was in a car accident caused by a hit-and-run driver, call the experienced auto accident lawyers at Salamati Law Firm, 800-957-9898. Sean Salamati has been obtaining justice in Los Angeles car accidents for decades. Let him put his experience to work for you.

Additional Resources:

  1. State of California Department of Motor Vehicles. https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv.
  2. Tips for Handling A Hit And Run Driver Claim. DMV.org. https://www.dmv.org/tips-for-handling-a-hit-and-run-driver-claim.php.
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My Car Was Hit While Parked: What Next?

July 31, 2018 Auto Accidents

Few things are as aggravating as coming back to your car, ready to slide in and turn on some music…

using smartphone take photo car crash accident of the damage to the car for accident insuranceFew things are as aggravating as coming back to your car, ready to slide in and turn on some music… and finding your car has been hit.

Seeing someone hit your parked car and drive away as you are walking back to it is equally frustrating.

You shouldn’t limit your responses to swearing and crying, though, understandable as those are. Hitting a parked car needs to be treated the same as with any other accident, with calmness and the gathering of information.

Gather Information and Notify Authorities

Drivers who hit a parked car shouldn’t leave the scene. It’s an accident that has damaged property. If they absolutely must leave, they should leave a note with information on how to get in touch with them, or find out the identity of the car’s owner with a view to contacting them later.

If they can’t do either of these things, they should contact the police, just as they would in an accident where cars were moving.

If no attempt to contact anyone is made, it’s a hit and run accident.

What You Should Do

So what’s next if you see no note or contact information?

First, contact the police. They will come and take down information on what happened. A police accident report ensures that your insurance company will have official notification of the accident and the circumstances.

Second, ask passers-by if they witnessed anyone hitting your vehicle. If possible, it’s a good idea to find the driver. If a witness can give you a description of the car, the driver, or even part of the license plate, it could help. Note, though, that passers-by were not necessarily around when your car was hit.

Third, snap multiple pictures of your car if you can. Many people carry smartphones: use that camera if available. Take pictures from every angle. It gives your insurance carrier an idea of how and from which angle the car was hit, and establishes the extent of the damage.

Pictures can be used in potential claims against the hit-and-run driver, if they can be found.

Fourth, write down the details about where your car was and when you found it. Specific addresses, times, and dates are helpful.

Fifth, after police have finished and you have gathered all information, call your insurance carrier. Call them as soon as possible, and before you leave the scene. Some adjusters will want to take their own pictures and file a report.

An Experienced Car Accident Attorney in Southern California

Finding your car damaged at a parking site is more than annoying. It’s a hit-and-run crime.

If you or a loved one found their car damaged as a result of being hit while it was parked, call the experienced Los Angeles auto accident lawyers at Salamati Law Firm today. Sean Salamati has been obtaining justice in LA car accidents for years. Let him put his experience to work for you.

Additional Resources:

  1. Hitting a parked car: essential next steps. Insurance.com. August 2, 2017. https://www.insurance.com/auto-insurance/parked-car-insurance.html
  2. Tips for Handling A Hit And Run Driver Claim. DMV.org. https://www.dmv.org/tips-for-handling-a-hit-and-run-driver-claim.php
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