Under Maine law, motorists involved in an accident must stop at the incident scene or return to the scene. Those who leave the scene of an accident may face severe criminal and civil penalties. In addition, engaging in this negligent conduct can exacerbate a victim’s injuries and cause a fatality that could have otherwise been prevented. While a hit-and-run can occur in an accident, they tend to occur after a motorist hits a pedestrian or cyclist. These accidents often occur in the early morning or late evening hours on roads without a designated bike lane.
There are many reasons why a motorist may leave the scene of an accident; however, these explanations rarely excuse the driver’s conduct. Drivers frequently leave the scene of an accident because they were:
- Under the influence of drugs or alcohol,
- Operating their vehicle without a valid license or insurance,
- Avoiding liability or fearful of confrontation,or
- Experiencing a medical event.
In some situations, the driver may claim that they did not know they hit another person.
Recently, Maine news reports provided an update to a hit-and-run accident involving a bicyclist. Officials responded to a call that a 68-year-old man was lying on the ground next to his bike. When officers arrived, the biker was alert but was bleeding from various cuts. Emergency responders took him to Maine Medical Center for treatment. The biker was not wearing a helmet during the crash, and the driver left the accident scene. Three days after the accident, a 66-year-old man turned himself into law enforcement. The driver was charged with leaving the scene of a personal injury accident.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that helmet use can reduce serious bike injuries by nearly 50%. While everyone knows the importance of wearing a helmet, many people continue to forego this critical safety equipment. Despite the well-known benefits of a helmet, the failure to wear one does invalidate an accident victim’s claims to recovery. Maine requires cyclists under 16-years-old to wear a helmet while riding in public. However, an attorney can help accident victims, and their families understand how helmet use may affect their insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit.
Have You Suffered Injuries in a Maine Accident
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries or died in a Maine bicycle accident, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates. The lawyers at our office have a comprehensive understanding of Maine’s complex personal injury and wrongful death laws. Our skills, knowledge, and experience provide them with the tools necessary to obtain favorable outcomes for our Maine clients. The firm handles many matters, including those arising from Maine motor vehicle accidents, products liability claims, premises liability claims, nursing home abuse and neglect, dog bites and other animal injuries, and wrongful death. The attorneys at our law firm work to ensure that our clients recover the compensation that the law entitles them. Contact our office at 1-800-804-2004 to schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney on our team.