A new study released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety (AAA) claims that fatal hit and run accidents continue to increase. As the name implies, a hit and run crash is where a motor vehicle strikes someone else and leaves the scene.
According to AAA, fatal hit and runs have increased by 7 percent each year since 2009. Almost 65 percent of the victims were cyclists and pedestrians. In 2016, an astonishing 2,049 people died in hit and run crashes – the highest number on record. An average of 682,000 hit and run crashes occur each year.
Why are hit and runs increasing? There could be a few possible causes, such as:
- More vehicles and cyclists on the road.
- An increase in mobile phone use during the last decade. Some motorists may be so distracted by their phones that they are unaware when they hit cyclists or pedestrians.
Some safety advocates say these causes cannot explain why hit and run crashes are increasing. Traffic safety advocates claim there are several solutions for decreasing the number of hit and run crashes. According to the League of American Bicyclists, an increase in police patrols and traffic cameras could catch drivers who leave accident scenes.
San Diego is not a stranger to hit and run accidents. In the past couple of months, there were several incidents where drivers struck other people and fled. Last month, an Ocean Beach man suffered a broken leg and rib after he was struck by a hit and run driver. Police later arrested the driver. Another hit and run driver ran over and killed a homeless man who was sleeping on the sidewalk.
Injury Compensation for a Hit and Run Accident
Hit and run drivers are sometimes apprehended by the authorities. If a hit and run driver strikes you, then it is important to record any information you can about the incident. Although it may not always be possible, try to remember the make, model and color of the vehicle. Witnesses might have this information. You should also seek medical attention and contact the police after a hit and run crash.
If the at fault driver is not apprehended, your automobile insurance carrier may compensate you for your injuries, if you have the appropriate insurance coverage. However, some insurance policies have additional reporting requirements for hit and run injuries, so you should contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible.
If a hit and run driver harmed you or a loved one, then you should speak with an attorney to determine possible options for recovering compensation. San Diego bicycle accident attorney Frederick Dudek could help you determine if these options exist for your situation.