Car accidents can be shocking. The adrenaline involved can often make drivers
do or say things they normally wouldn’t say following such an incident.
This response can sometimes look like embarrassment, anger, or frustration.
In other cases, it can look like fear. When a driver is overcome by these
feelings, they may flee the scene of the accident. This is considered a
hit and run.
Florida Code §316.027 (2011) requires all drivers to remain at the
scene of an accident long enough to ensure that all requirements mapped
out in §316.062 are followed. Essentially, each driver has a duty
to provide information and assistance if the other driver or individual
is in need. Intentionally or willfully violating this duty is considered
a third degree felony when injuries occur—a felony that carries
up to five years in prison and $5,000 in fines.
DUI & Fleeing the Scene
Some of the reasons that people flee the scene of an accident include feeling
guilty, concerned about the consequences of what may happen, or worrying
about the damages caused. A split decision like this can lead to a
felony crime conviction.
Another reason a driver may try to flee the scene of an accident is if
they violated some other law, such as driving under the influence. Even
if a driver isn’t intoxicated or above the legal limit, they may
fear that any alcohol in their system will lead to the accident being
blamed on them. In response, a driver may flee, adding additional repercussions
to their plate.
If you are accused of driving under the influence after being involved
in an accident, remaining at the scene is imperative. Unfortunately, not
all drivers comply with law enforcement during this time. By fleeing the
scene to avoid the DUI conviction, a person may add even more penalties
to their situation. Even if you are facing DUI charges, remain at the
scene of the accident. If you have already fled the scene of an accident,
reach out to a
Tampa DUI lawyer right away.
Civil Penalties for Fleeing the Scene
More than just criminal penalties, you can face increased civil penalties
if any injuries or damages were involved. The other individual involved
in the accident may choose to pursue a lawsuit against you, which may
include compensation for any medical expenses, wages lost while away from
work, and property damage. That means you are facing civil and criminal
penalties when you flee the scene of an accident.
If you fled an officer when arrested for a DUI or fled the scene of an
accident, you need representation you can rely on to advocate for you
Contact our Tampa hit and run attorneys today!