Hit and Run California Accidents: Who Are the Usual Victims?

hit and run california

When it comes to road accidents, there is a certain cluster of travelers and commuters who are more likely to get involved and hurt and seek medical care.

Fatal accidents are not uncommon; data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that about 20,160 motor vehicle-related casualties had occurred in the first half of 2021 alone. An 18.4% increase from 2020.

According to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), driver distraction caused up to 3,142 deaths in 2019 in relation to hit and run California accidents.

These figures also mean that even with so many road safety guidelines all over California, the surroundings remain unsafe for drivers and passengers, most especially for pedestrians and cyclists.

Given these hit and run California statistics, it’s only fair for the community to demand stricter enforcement of local laws for public safety. Cases such as these can cause several complications such as life-changing injuries that worsen over a period of time, a mountain of medical bills, and even lead to a felony charge for the at-fault party.

If you or a loved one has figured in a hit-and-run accident through the actions of an at-fault driver, you should immediately call an attorney experienced in handling hit and run California cases to get the justice and compensation you deserve for your insurance claim.

Victims of Hit and Run Accidents in California

Certain types of road users are more likely to be victims of hit-and-runs in the state, and there are numbers to prove them.

Pedestrians

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), there were a total of 6,205 pedestrian deaths in 2019. These numbers present a 3% decrease from the data collected in the previous year. But reports still show that pedestrian deaths still made up 17% of all crash fatalities. 

The age of the pedestrian is an important factor in these types of incidents since it has been revealed that children under 6 years of age and adults over 80 are the most frequent victims of hit-and-run incidents. The penalty for a hit-and-run can be graver when a minor or senior citizen is injured or in need of medical attention.

Cyclists

Another group that is frequently involved in these types of incidents are cyclists. This is mainly because vehicle collisions lead to major damage on the cyclist’s end. Cyclists don’t have enough protection other than a helmet, elbow pads, and knee pads. Hence, they are extremely susceptible to bodily injury when they come in contact with a much larger vehicle.

Due to the pandemic, more and more people resorted to cycling as a mode of transportation in 2020. Outside Magazine reports that 675 cyclists died in bike-related accidents that year. In May 2020, the fitness app Strava reported a 93% increase in biking activities in comparison to the data collected the year before.

Hit-and-Run Driver Trends

Looking at historical hit and run California trends, the AAA concluded that felony incidents of this nature are 4.4 times more probable to happen between midnight and 4:00 a.m. This could be due to lower visibility at this hour and the higher chance of success should the party at fault flee from the accident scene.

Moreover, the Foundation affirms that nocturnal drivers tend to adopt risky behaviors, such as driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, driving without a license or vehicle registration. These behaviors are typically what trigger a hit-and-run driver to go into hiding.

Even a seemingly minor accident can lead to significant vehicle damage or destruction to private property.

Legal Consequences

Is a hit-and-run a criminal offense in California? According to California Vehicle Code §20002, if the driver at fault flees a hit-and-run accident that incurs property damage, such as a minor fender bender, this could leave the offender with a sentence of up to six months in county jail, a fine of up to $1,000, or both. The penalty for hit-and-run in California can also include three years of probation, restitution for property damage, and a two-point violation on one’s state driving record. 

California Vehicle Code §20001 and §20003 states that fleeing the scene and failing to provide reasonable assistance in a vehicular accident that produces an injured person or a death can be charged as a felony offense. 

If you or a loved one were injured or someone you know had died because of a hit-and-run incident, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. Farahi Law Firm is highly experienced in handling hit-and-run and auto accident cases in California. 

Our personal injury lawyers can help throughout the entire hit-and-run investigation process and will make sure that you get the full compensation for your medical expenses and the justice you deserve. Don’t let the culprit getaway. Call us for legal advice at 844-824-2955.

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