Fleeing the Scene of the Accident Can Bring On Serious Charges

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 in court. Contact our Tampa hit and run attorneys today!