The unfortunate reality is that hit-and-run accidents are more common than you think. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of fatal hit-and-run crashes is increasing from 1,274 in 2009 to 1,449 in 2011. Most, if not all, states have statutes that make leaving the scene of an accident a crime, with very serious consequences. Most people understand that they should pull over after striking a pedestrian on the roadway. But sometimes fear and, most often, intoxication, result in far too many hit and run deaths.
Recent hit-and-run accidents in Alabama
On March 15, 2016, a Birmingham man died after he and a friend were struck by a vehicle while they were attempting to cross the street. The man, Frederick Goins Threets, was 59 years old. The vehicle kept going after striking both men, who were taken to UAB Hospital. Threets was pronounced dead early the next morning after succumbing to his injuries.
In Prichard, a bicyclist was seriously injured on March 5, 2016, when he was struck by a vehicle, which also kept going. Fortunately, the victim was taken to a local hospital by an unknown motorist. He suffered extensive injuries and was treated at USA Medical Center.
Alabama’s hit and run statute
Alabama has passed a law which prohibits drivers from leaving the scene of an automobile accident involving injuries or death. Alabama Code §32-10-1 states as follows:
The driver of any motor vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or the death of any person, or in damage to a motor vehicle or other vehicle which is driven or attended by any person, shall immediately stop such vehicle at the scene of such accident or as close thereto as possible and shall then forthwith return to and in every event shall remain at the scene of the accident until he has fulfilled the requirements of Section 32-10-3. Every such stop shall be made without obstructing traffic more than is necessary.
The penalty for violating this statute is the same as for a Class C felony, which is “not more than 10 years or less than 1 year and 1 day.”
If you have questions regarding hit-and-run accidents, or any other personal injury matter, please contact the experienced attorneys at Means Gillis Law, PC, either online or by calling toll free at (844) 870-1777.