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Could Amber-Alert type system locate hit-and-run drivers?

It is possible. The city council is debating the details of how such a system might work. By bringing more individuals to justice, it could enforce the importance of staying at a scene and reduce the number of hit-and-run accidents across the city.

In fiscal 2016, the NYPD received reports of almost 45,000 hit-and-run accidents. Very few of the drivers in these crashes were ever identified or located. In that same period, there were only 510 related arrests.

How an alert system could help

When cars, buses, commercial delivery vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians all have to share the roadway there will be accidents. When the driver of a vehicle leaves the scene, any delay in treatment can quickly exacerbate an injury to a cyclist, pedestrian or another driver.

The new approach may involve sending out messages to cell phones that are near the location of a hit-and-run accident. Sent out by the city, these might include a description of the driver, make and model of the car involved or an image of a suspected vehicle. These would only be sent in cases of a serious injury or death.

Modeled after the Amber Alert system, used to locate missing children, it is unclear exactly how the new system might operate. With the number of hit-and-run accidents that happen in each borough, localizing these alerts and limiting the number will be important. Police also expressed concern that in many cases they do not have sufficient details to send out a request for help locating a vehicle or driver.

The examples from other cities

Los Angeles rejected this type of approach and instead posts information on signs and pushes it out to the public through social media. San Francisco and other cities however, have implemented these types of systems successfully.

It is important to note, that often you will have coverage through your own motor vehicle policy for an injury caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver that might provide benefits in a hit-and-run. In addition, the Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corp. will provide coverage of $25,000 for liability plus $50,000 for no fault coverage when an injury is caused by an uninsured driver. But you must file a claim within 90 days of the accident.

For those who are injured in hit-and-run accidents and their families, treatment and prognosis are first concerns. Then consider speaking with a personal injury attorney about what occurred. There may be more remedies available that you initially realize.

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