A couple of weeks ago in the Orlando, Central FL area, we were reminded of one of the many dangers of fleeing an accident. A woman, who fled the scene of a hit-and-run crash that she was responsible for, was killed after she crossed the median of I-4. After her initial crash, her Jeep Wrangler crossed the median of I-4 and entered into the eastbound lanes. She then struck a Mercedes which had four passengers, one adult and three small children aged one, three, and four. That impact also caused a pick-up, towing a trailer loaded with two motorcycles, to start spinning across several lanes. She was ejected from her jeep and landed face down on the eastbound lanes, where she died.
Luckily no one else was killed in this tragic event. Whether or not drugs or alcohol played any role in the crash remains to be seen, but it's just another example of the dangers of fleeing an accident. Far too often hit-and-runs lead to more trouble than the initial accident. The first and best legal advice any defense attorney will give you, involving a car accident, is to never flee the scene. You should stop the vehicle as soon as you can, then safely locate the other drivers/passengers and exchange insurance info and contact local law enforcement to arrive on the scene.
The criminal penalties for leaving the scene of a crash are staggering. Fines and the loss of your license are just the tipping point. What if you flee the scene of an accident so serious, that it lead to a loss of life? You can go to prison for years for this and you can expect a civil suit not too far away. It's easy to panic after an accident, but please remember to use common sense.