Any car accident can be a traumatizing experience. The unexpected jolt and crunch of metal causes immediate stress in many. However, this experience can become even worse if the person at fault leaves the scene. The state of New Jersey takes hit-and-run offenses very seriously. The state’s driver manual says that a hit-and-run resulting in death or injury will result in a one-year suspension of license for the driver at fault. Furthermore, the driver may incur up to six months in jail and a fine up to $5,000. If a person is involved in a hit-and-run for the second time, his or her license will be revoked permanently.
For victims in a hit-and-run situation, it is very important to stay calm and take the necessary steps to ensure the safety of people and property involved. MSN lays out specific actions to take. The most important step is to move to a safe location. If the accident took place in the middle of the road, immediately pulling off to the side or a parking lot is best. Attempting to follow the perpetrator is not advised, because it may result in further collisions. The accident should also be reported to the victim’s auto insurance company as soon as possible.
If it is safe to do so, it may be helpful to seek witnesses. Gathering the contact information of those who saw the accident take place may be beneficial for insurance claims, and possibly future court appearances. It is also necessary to document the state of the vehicle that was hit with as much detail as possible. Photos and an immediate written account will capture the scene more accurately than trying to recall details at a later time. Although most victims of a hit-and-run may not have had the opportunity to memorize the driver’s license plate number, recalling as many details about the offender’s vehicle as possible may prove beneficial in the search for the driver.