AAA studied national hit-and-run data and placed Maryland number 19 among all states in a ranking from least to most of these frightening accidents, reported Cars.com. Falling in the middle of all states may not seem alarming, but a Google search on the day of this writing for “hit and run Maryland” yields stories of several recent motor vehicle collisions after which a driver left the scene in our state.
AAA found that the 2,049 U.S. hit-and-run fatalities in 2016 represented the highest yearly number on record. Most hit-and-run deaths are of bicyclists or pedestrians.
Role of uninsured motorist insurance
While of course leaving the scene of an accident is a crime, it also becomes an issue for injured victims (or the surviving loved ones of people who have passed away from such incidents) of how they will recover financially for their losses. In such a situation, if the authorities find the driver, he or she (and his or her insurance) will be on the hook for negligently or recklessly causing harm.
If the driver is not located or if when found, he is uninsured, the victim’s own vehicle insurance will have uninsured coverage (required under Maryland law) to help pay for medical costs, lost wages, property damages and other losses. The victim’s uninsured (or underinsured) coverage could also kick in to help make up the difference if the negligent driver’s coverage level is not high enough to cover all losses.
Uninsured coverage issues in a hit-and-run situation can be complex. Anyone hurt in a hit and run should speak with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible for a thorough analysis of all insurance policies involved.