It was in December 2019, when Fox 40 shared the devastating story involving a 71-year-old woman who was killed by a pickup truck driver in Stockton. The news source said the woman had been walking on West Benjamin Holt Drive near Leesburg place when she was struck by a pickup truck. The woman was pronounced dead at the accident scene, although the driver was nowhere to be found. The local police department said that it was unclear whether alcohol or drugs were a factor in the hit-and-run accident.
What constitutes as a hit-and-run truck accident in California?
When a driver engages in an accident with someone or something that results in property damage, injuries to another, or death, and fails to remain at the scene to exchange their information and/or contact law enforcement officials, he/she is guilty of hit-and-run. The state of California requires all drivers who are involved in an accident that results in the injury to another person, other than themselves, the death of a person, or property damage (when the damage is estimated to be worth $1,000) to immediately stop their vehicle at the scene of the accident.
Apart from stopping at the accident scene, a driver must also provide those involved with certain information including, but not limited to:
- His or her name
- Their current address
- The registration number of the vehicle he or she is driving.
- The name and current address of the owner of the vehicle if it doesn’t belong to the driver. For example, if you were involved in an accident with a commercial truck driver, he/she is required to provide you with their employer’s information.
The law also requires a driver to “render to any person injured in the accident reasonable assistance” which might include calling 911 or transporting them to an area hospital so medical treatment can be rendered. If a driver fails to stop at an accident scene that resulted in an injury to another or death, he/she could be punished by imprisonment and/or fines. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, a driver could face up to a year in prison and/or having to a maximum fine of $10,000.
If the accident resulted in the death of another, the maximum jail sentence increases to four years and the fine remains at $10,000. Now, the penalties for hit and run do vary as it all depends on what factors played a role in the accident. Therefore, a driver could face the penalties listed above or penalties that are enhanced.
What can I do if a loved one suffered fatal injuries in a hit-and-run accident in Stockton, CA?
If you suffered injuries in a hit-and-run truck accident in CA or a loved one was fatally injured, you may be able to bring a claim against the driver if he/she is later identified. In order to do this, you are going to need to retain a Stockton, CA truck accident lawyer. In the meantime, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages by filing a claim with your auto and health insurer.
Recovering compensation for your losses after a hit-and-run truck accident can be a bit of a challenge which is why it is recommended you contact USAttorneys.com to get connected with a local truck accident attorney in Stockton, CA who can help you with this.