By: Megan Gibson
Hit-and-run collisions happen far too often, wherein not only is a victim
hurt due to someone else’s negligence, but the wrongdoer attempts
to forgo any type of responsibility by fleeing the scene. Such a scenario
occurred recently in Virginia, on September 23, 2017, when a
state Transportation Employee was seriously injured while helping a disabled motorist on I-95.
According to authorities, the worker was putting out traffic cones to warn
other vehicles of the disabled car, when a green Ford mustang struck him,
and then fled the scene. The worker was taken to Fairfax INOVA hospital
with serious injuries.
In hit-and-run cases, it is often extremely difficult to identify and find
the wrongdoer. However, in this case,
thanks to witnesses and local law enforcement, a suspect was apprehended and
charged with the hit-and-run, as well as driving on a revoked license. The condition of the worker
at this juncture is unknown, but we all are hoping that the worker has
a safe and speedy recovery. One can only hope that if wrongdoers who ‘hit-and-run’
keep getting caught like this, that it will serve as a warning sign to
other drivers to not only drive more carefully, but also to take responsibility
for their actions.
In addition to warning others about the repercussions of fleeing the scene,
this accident is also a reminder about the importance of
uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, which can provide an invaluable lifeline to injured accident victims
when they need it most. Often in these types of accidents, at-fault drivers
who hit-and-run are never found – or, when they are, are found to
have been driving without a license. This being the case in this recent
accident, we are hopeful the victim involved did have this insurance coverage,
as it will prove crucial in helping them recover the damages associated
with their serious injuries and treatment.
While drivers of hit-and-run accidents will likely face criminal charges
for their conduct, as well as any other crimes that occurred or outstanding
offenses for which they are wanted, it must be remembered that criminal
proceedings do not provide a viable source of compensation to victims,
especially when their medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages
have accumulated. In order to recover these damages when the at-fault
driver has no insurance, victims must pursue claims with their own insurance
provider under their UM/UIM coverage.
Our legal team always advises others to purchase UM/UIM coverage, as it
can make all the difference when the unexpected happens, and provide a
source for compensation when needed most.