If you have recently been involved in a car accident, it is likely that you are feeling somewhat distressed and anxious about the next steps. Further to this, in some cases, the other driver may have driven off without stopping following the accident and they could therefore have committed a criminal offence under s170 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.
Following a road traffic accident the other driver, ‘must stop and, if required to do so by any person having reasonable grounds for so requiring, give his name and address and also the name and address of the owner and the identification marks of the vehicle.’ If they do not provide their name and address they must report the accident to the police.
What should I do if the other driver failed to stop following the accident?
There are a number of steps that you may wish to take following your accident.
Take photographs on your phone of the other driver’s vehicle or, if there is insufficient time, make a note of the driver’s registration number colour, make and model of the car.
- Report the incident and offence to the police immediately.
The police should carry out investigations which may include searching for any CCTV footage recording the incident.
Furthermore, the other driver may be aware that the accident was their fault and therefore they may have driven off in order to avoid accepting liability due to the effect it may have on their vehicle insurance. If this is the case, they may also be reluctant to report the incident to the police. If you have reported the incident to the police immediately, this may be used as evidence in the future should you pursue a claim for vehicle damage or injury.
Record the date and time of the accident.
Speak to any witnesses as soon as possible and ascertain their name and contact details.
Take photographs of any damage to your vehicle and also of the area where the incident occurred.
If you have been injured, then you should consider whether you require medical attention. If so, you should attend your GP or the hospital as soon as possible. When you are able, take photographs of any visible injuries.
You should also report the accident to your vehicle insurers to deal with the cost of any damage to your vehicle.
Once you have taken the above steps, you may consider making a claim for your injuries and any expenses that you have incurred, or will incur in the future, as a result of the accident. If all reasonable attempts have been made to identify the other driver, but such enquiries have been unsuccessful, you may still be able to make a claim for your injuries through the Motor Insurance Bureau (MIB) Untraced Drivers Scheme. The MIB’s objectives include compensating victims of untraced drivers fairly and promptly.
Please contact one of our experienced Personal Injury Solicitors today for further information on 0845 287 0939 or complete our online contact form.