A hit-and-run collision that began with an illegal passing maneuver left a pedestrian in Halifax County, Virginia (VA), with life-threatening injuries. The nearly fatal crash happened on U.S. Route 501/L.P. Bailey Memorial Highway at around 6:45 am on January 12, 2018.
Virginia State Police responded to the scene a short distance north of the intersection of Route 501 and Hog Wallow Road. Troopers found that the at-fault had fled after attempting to pass another vehicle by driving on the right-hand shoulder. In addition to striking the pedestrian, the hit-and-driver also collided with a guardrail.
Authorities are asking people in Halifax and Campbell counties to be on the lookout for a car with significant damage to its windshield, right front end and passenger door. Anyone who spots the car or knows the identity of the hit-and-run driver should share their information by calling (434) 352-7128 or emailing at [email protected].
The pedestrian was completely off the roadway when the driver hit him. In addition to the felony of fleeing after inflicting injuries on another person, the driver committed two traffic violations. First, the wreck occurred in a no-passing zone, where the two lanes of Route 501 are divided by double yellow lines.
Second, the driver illegally used the shoulder as a travel lane. Section 46.2-841.3.B of the Virginia Code states, in part, “Except where driving on paved shoulders is permitted by lawfully placed signs, no such movement shall be made by driving on the shoulder of the highway or off the pavement or main traveled portion of the roadway.”
This crash in Halifax County illustrates how pedestrians have few protections from negligent and reckless drivers. In fact, while the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles recorded 1.704 collisions involving pedestrians during 2015, the agency found that those incidents injured 1,718 pedestrians and killed another 78 people who had been crossing a street, walking along a highway or in a parking lot. These statistics indicate that nearly every time a vehicle strikes a pedestrian or group of pedestrians, serious harms or a loss of life occurs.
Identifying the hit-and-run driver from the wreck on Route 501 near Hog Wallow Road is essential for making the person answer for criminal actions and for having the driver compensate and pay damages for causing life-threatening injuries. If the at-fault driver is never located, the pedestrian may need to invoke uninsured motorist provisions of his own auto insurance policies. Consulting with a knowledgeable and caring Virginia personal injury lawyer will help the victim understand and exercise his legal options.