Following a major car accident, it is often customary for the parties to contact the local authorities or police so that an official report can be generated. Contacting law enforcement can also be helpful to establish a paper trail so that the victims of the accident have official documentation of the how, where, when, and why associated with the crash that took place. In the event of any injuries, local authorities can also assist those who have been hurt on the scene. At-fault parties, however, are also required to remain on the scene following an accident. In the event that this requirement is not fulfilled, it could lead to serious legal consequences.
According to a recent local news report, a longtime local Washington, D.C. news anchor was arrested and charged after a weekend car accident. Local authorities reported that the man rear-ended another vehicle, which caused that vehicle to collide with a third car. Following the accident, no one was seriously injured. Police noted, however, that when they arrived, the news anchor attempted to leave the scene and subsequently failed a sobriety test. His breathalyzer test determined that his blood alcohol content was twice the legal limit. After the crash, the anchor was charged with six misdemeanors relating to the collision, including driving under the influence, driving while impaired by alcohol, attempting to elude the police, attempting to drive while impaired, and two separate charges related to failing to stay on the scene of the accident. An investigation into further details surrounding the accident is ongoing.
Like other parts of the country, Washington, D.C. has specific rules and laws governing the responsibilities of drivers and parties after an accident. When someone flees the scene of an accident in D.C., local authorities may charge them with a misdemeanor. In hit-and-run situations, violators could face up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine.
Can Washington, D.C DUI accident victims recover for their injuries?
Yes, if you were recently involved in a Washington, D.C. car accident with a driver who was operating their vehicle under the influence and the accident resulted in injury, death, or significant personal property damage, you may have grounds to bring a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party. Because operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol would likely constitute negligence or recklessness, bringing a personal injury claim against the at-fault party could help you recover medical expenses, repairs associated with property damage, or other losses.
In addition, if a person attempts to flee the scene when you contact the authorities after an accident, this may be significant when it comes to establishing liability in a personal injury accident. Although personal injury accidents are civil claims separate from any criminal charges the driver may face for fleeing the scene of an accident, the fact could prove to be useful in establishing that the at-fault party potentially knew they were negligent or reckless and attempted to leave so that they would not be held responsible for their behavior.
Do You Need a Washington, D.C. Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you or someone you know was recently injured in a D.C. personal injury accident, contact the attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen for assistance. Our lawyers will provide you with the advocacy, support, and experience you need to proceed with your legal claim with confidence. To schedule a free initial consultation today, contact us at 800-654-1949.