A driver struck and killed a man in his Hollywood and fled the scene. According to a Los Angeles Police Department detective, the accident happened on Sunset Boulevard near its intersection with La Brea Avenue Thursday around 2 a.m., April 16, 2019.
Witnesses say that the man was crossing the street outside of a crosswalk when he was struck by a silver car which stopped briefly and then drove away. Police are hoping that someone who has information regarding the incident will contact them at (213) 972-2971.
Hit-and-Run Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrians are especially vulnerable to a hit-and-run accident, and according to a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, when a pedestrian is struck by a hit-and-run driver, the risk of fatality goes up. In 2017, one in five pedestrians that were victims of a hit-and-run died from their injures whereas only 1 in 9 die when the driver doesn’t leave.
There are many reasons for this, and researchers suggest that one reason is that for some drivers, a more serious accident might be a factor in the driver’s decision to stay or flee. Unfortunately, when this happens, the injured are left to fend for themselves and may not get help in time to avoid death or serious injury.
In some circumstance’s passersby will render aid, but this can’t be counted on, especially in rural areas or in an area where traffic is light. In a critical injury, time is of the essence to ensure that the victim is given every chance to make a full recovery.
Injuries at Further Risk in a Hit-and-Run
There are many types of injuries that can happen in a hit-and-run with some putting the victim at higher risk of death or more serious injury. They are:
- Neck Injuries: Neck injuries need to be stabilized quickly and delays might cause more problems.
- Deep lacerations: Any loss-of-blood injuries can put the victim in danger if first aid is delayed.
- Punctured Lungs: Broken ribs can lead to a punctured lung which can deprive a person of their ability to breath and get oxygen.
- Heart Attack: The stress of an accident can cause a heart attack, and a quick response from EMS can make a difference.
- Pregnancy/Delivery: An accident can put a pregnant woman into labor, and the quicker the response, the more likely there will be a good outcome.
Liability in a Hit-and-Run
Another problem with a hit-and-run accident is the anxiety over who will compensate the injured for their injuries. When the at-fault driver isn’t known, the person is unable to collect from their insurance unless they are found. However, there are some possible types of compensation that might be available to a hit-and-run victim from their own insurance policy:
- Medpay: This is a provision that drivers can get on their own policy that will pay for medical bills regardless of who is at fault or who is injured so long as the insured or their vehicle is involved.
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP): This works similar to medpay, but it pays medical bills and other damages like pain and suffering and loss of wages. It also pays out regardless of who was injured or at fault so long at the insured or their vehicle is involved.
- Uninsured/Underinsured (UM/UIM): Most insurance policies have uninsured/underinsured provisions that will pay those covered by the policy for all personal injury damages if the other driver is underinsured or has no insurance. This can include when a hit-and-run driver is never found, so long as they were at fault in the accident.
California Auto Insurance
California does not require you to have PIP or medpay, but almost all insurance carriers will offer them as add-on provisions. Remember, medpay pays only for medical bills, whereas PIP pays for medical bills and for certain other losses such as loss time from work and pain and suffering. This also makes PIP coverage more expensive than medpay.
However, California does require that all drivers carry policies UM/UIM coverage. If an injured pedestrian has this provision on their own insurance policy, this might pay for their losses the same as if the at-fault driver was known. But there are limitations such as the need to prove the other driver negligent, and most policies put a cap on the amount of damages paid out.
Do I need an Attorney for a Hit-and-Run?
If you’ve been injured in a hit-and-run, you need to talk to an attorney who can evaluate your circumstances and find all sources of compensation for your injuries. Don’t wait around for the other driver to be found, act quickly and get the right advice.
If you are injured in a hit-and-run accident, get an experienced attorney on your side who knows the laws and has the experience dealing with insurance companies and their defense attorneys and can get results. Call the Law Offices of Steers & Associates at 800 824 5416 or click here to contact us online.