Minding your own business and then WHAM! another vehicle hits you and leaves the scene without identifying itself, or seeing if you sustained any damage or injury. This is your basic hit and run accident. Having your wits about you and knowing what to do ahead of the time is critical in situations like these. Here is what you need to know, and do, after a hit and run.
What to Do After a Hit and Run
- Seek medical help – First thing in every accident is to make sure to call 911 and make sure the police and ambulance are notified. If you have no visible injuries, take care of the other items in this list. However, in some cases, injuries may be completely internal, so listen to your body for pains or other signs of internal injury. It’s important to get checked out even if you appear to be uninjured.
- Collect evidence – If possible, get the car’s license plate number. This will make it more likely your insurance company will reimburse your deductible and help the police find the driver. The make, model, and color will help if you can’t get the plate number. Provide the police with at least the state on the license plate and partial number if possible.
- Take pictures – Pictures of the damages to your car will come in handy later. Don’t clean up the accident site of debris until you have taken pictures. Write down the exact location it took place. Check to see if the other car’s paint rubbed off on yours, as that can help protect you should your insurance company suspect fraud.
- Contact the police – Even if you couldn’t get a license plate number or a good description of the vehicle, you should call the police. This will allow you to complete an accident report, in which you can collect the names of any witnesses and other key details.
- File a claim – If you have either uninsured motorist coverage or collision coverage, call your insurance company. You will probably have to pay a deductible, but your insurance company will reimburse until the police possibly find the guilty party. Unfortunately, without either of these types of insurance, you may have to pay for the repairs yourself.