After a car accident, it is normal to feel scrambled and lost. But what do you do if your mind is still reeling from the impact and the other driver takes off down the road? You might feel tempted to give chase, but you should check your impulses and stay put.
Not only will you face penalties for leaving the scene, but it is safer, according to Nationwide Insurance, to pull over and stay away from traffic after the collision.
What can you do at the scene?
If you stay behind and the other driver flees, what are your options? First, by staying put, you save yourself from the fines, jail time and loss of driving privileges that can result from leaving the scene of the accident. Second, when you stay behind, you can question any potential witnesses about the accident. They may be able to tell you additional details about the other driver that you did not notice. You can also take the time to gather as much information as possible about the make, model and description of the other car. Even a partial plate number can help.
If you do not need medical attention, you can take pictures of the accident scene. Along with photographic evidence, take down names and contact information for all witnesses. Some may even have pictures or videos of their own that they can send you to add to your evidence.
Can the police help?
As with any accident, you can file a police report for a hit-an-run. To ensure that the police have the best chance of finding the other driver, provide the names of witnesses and any relevant details about the accident that you can remember. If you know the direction the driver fled in or remember the vehicle’s make and model, let the officers know.