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Pedestrian car accidents can lead to jail time

When a Hawaii driver gets behind the wheel, he or she assumes a wide range of responsibilities to those with whom the road is shared. Drivers must ensure that their vehicle is in proper operating condition. They are required to drive only while in good physical condition, including refraining from driving while impaired or exhausted. Drivers must follow the rules of the road and make good choices while operating their vehicles, in an effort to avoid car accidents that can bring harm to all involved.

A recent sentencing provides an example of the punitive measures that can follow when a driver fails to meet these obligations. A 37-year-old Hawaii resident has been found guilty of multiple criminal charges and sentenced to a year in jail after failing to stop when he struck and injured a pedestrian. In addition, he will remain on probation for five years after his release.

In 2012, the man was observed to be swerving and otherwise driving erratically when he approached and struck a female pedestrian. The woman sustained serious injuries in the accident, including a detached retina, fractured clavicle and fractures to her ribs. Witnesses followed the driver to his home, and convinced him to return to the scene. He was eventually found guilty of driving while intoxicated and first degree negligent injury.

This man will serve one year in jail, and subsequent probation. However, the woman he struck and injured while driving under the influence likely went through significant pain and suffering as a result of his actions. She may also have lost time from work and incurred significant medical expenses, which are common results of car accidents. Should she decide to pursue legal recourse, she has the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against the Hawaii driver who struck her and then drove away from the scene.

Source: Hawaii News Now, "Kauai driver sentenced in hit-and-run crash", , Aug. 29, 2014

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