Many Florida parents can relate to feeling anxious and worried when the teenagers in their households become licensed drivers. There is an inherent risk associated with all motor vehicle travel, whether driving or riding as a passenger. If your child is involved in a collision, he or she may be frightened; however, it is important to remain at the scene to speak with police because fleeing an accident scene, especially one that resulted in injury to another person, is a crime.
Every state has its own statutes regarding penalties for fleeing the scene of an accident. If your son or daughter has a junior license, running away from an accident site may impede his or her ability to obtain a senior license at age 18. It’s also possible that your child could face criminal charges for not remaining at the scene to speak with police who arrive to investigate the collision.
Damage to property because of a collision
If your child is involved in a fender-bender, you would no doubt be relieved to learn that, although there was damage to the vehicles, no one suffered physical injuries in the crash. Even if this is the case, however, your son or daughter is still obligated to remain at the scene. Also, if his or her vehicle is obstructing traffic, he or she must try to have it safely removed from the roadway.
Your son or daughter might call you in the immediate aftermath of a collision. It is only natural that you would want to provide as much emotional support as possible, as well as help him or her navigate insurance issues and any legal problems that may arise following the incident.
Personal injury or fatality
If someone suffered injury or death as a result of a collision that involved your child behind the wheel, he or she may suffer severe emotional trauma. Leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in injury, or a fatality to a pedestrian or occupants in another vehicle, may be chargeable as a “felony hit and run.” Facing such charges could have long-term implications on your child’s life.
Like all good parents in Florida and beyond, you want what’s best for your child. This would include helping him or her navigate the criminal justice system if he or she winds up facing charges regarding a motor vehicle collision or fleeing the scene of an accident. Kids often make serious mistakes and need the support of their parents and others to help them make things right and to mitigate their circumstances as much as possible.