Failing to Stop and Assist Offences & Defences in NSW

Sahar Adatia and Jimmy Singh.

 

An incident has taken place in Sydney’s west in which a driver struck a woman on the road, pinning

her against a wall, then failing to stop to assist following the crash.

The incident is believed to have occurred around 6.30pm on Saturday 27 March 2021 following reports a pedestrian had been hit by a vehicle in Rosehill.

Emergency services were called to Penelope Lucas Lane near Virginia Lane, where police were informed that prior to the collision, a man and woman were involved in an argument with an unknown man who was driving a Skoda Octavia.

It is understood the unknown man then allegedly drove the vehicle at the pedestrians, at which point he pinned the woman against a wall before simply taking off.

“The unknown man reversed and fled the scene in the vehicle,” NSW Police said in a statement.

Officers from Cumberland Police Area Command attended the site of the crash where detectives initiated an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the fail-to-stop incident.

While a widespread search of the area and surrounds was conducted afterwards, leading to the discovery of the vehicle on Crown Street in Harris Park a short time later, the driver had nonetheless escaped before police arrival.

Meanwhile, the woman, aged 41, suffered a severe injury to her lower leg and was treated at the scene.

Once in stable condition, she was transported to Westmead Hospital.

The man, aged 37, endured a minor foot injury, however did not require hospitalisation.

Now, the hunt for the offender continues.

The man has been described as being of African appearance, with short curly hair.

He was wearing a red basketball jersey and shorts at the time of the crash.

 

Stopping After A Crash: The NSW Road Rules You Need to Know

In NSW, Transport for NSW enforces strict rules that must be adhered to if you are involved in a crash, especially where the crash causes injury or death to another person.

Most importantly, it is mandatory for the driver to stop and offer as much help as possible.

Additionally, certain details must be provided to the other people involved or to the police.

These include the driver’s name and address, their vehicle registration number, and the name and address of the owner of the vehicle, if the driver is not the owner.

Along with these details, where police attend a crash scene, the driver must also give police details of the incident, as well as information about any witnesses and other drivers involved.

Where you do not stop to help after being involved in a crash, and the incident causes injury or death, you can face harsh penalties, including fines and jail time.

 

When Do Police Need to be Called Following A Crash on the Road?

Police will attend and investigate a vehicle crash in certain circumstances.

These include when a person is trapped, killed or injured, where any driver is believed to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, where a person fails to stop or exchange information, where police are needed to direct traffic or deal with hazards, and in the case where a bus or truck needs to be towed away.

Police do not need to be called to attend a crash scene when there are no injuries to the parties involved, and where vehicles do not need to be towed.

Where police are required to attend the crash scene but are not able to, you must report the crash as soon as possible – generally within 24 hours – in the case where a vehicle is towed away, property is damaged or animals are injured, you’re unable to provide your details to the other driver.

Ultimately, safe driving reduces the chances of being involved in a crash, as does adhering to the safe stopping distance rules.

Failing to Stop and Assist Offences & Defences in NSW

As a driver, it is your duty to adhere to the road rules when you are involved in a traffic accident on the road.

In particular, this means that you must stop and you must give assistance to anyone involved in the incident who may be injured or requiring help.

In NSW, under section 146 of the Road Transport Act 2013, failing to stop and give assistance after a crash with another person occasioning injury or death can leave you facing substantial penalties, including a maximum penalty of a fine of $3,300 or 18 months in prison, or both, where the offence is a first-time offence. This is in addition to an automatic three-year or minimum twelve-months driver licence disqualification period.

However, for a second offence of this kind, the maximum penalty jumps to a fine of $5,500, or two years in prison, or both. This is in addition to an automatic five-year or minimum two-year driver licence disqualification period.

There is also a further duty of a driver involved in a crash to exchange details under clause 287 of the Road Rules 2014 (NSW). This clause requires a driver to stop at the scene of the crash and provide the required particulars as soon as possible, except in exceptional circumstances, within 24-hours after the crash to any person involved in the crash or who’s injured.

If anyone is killed or injured in the crash, or if you fail to provide the required particulars within the requisite time to the relevant parties, or if requested by a police officer, the driver must also provide the driver’s required particulars to a police officer.

The required particulars that must be provided include:

  • The driver’s name and address,
  • Name and address of the owners of the driver’s vehicle,
  • The vehicle’s registration number,
  • Any other information necessary to identify the vehicle, and
  • If the police officer is required to be provided with the particulars, then the driver must also provide the officer with an explanation of the circumstances of the crash.

A breach of this clause attracts a fine of up to $2,200 in court. If the matter is dealt with out of court by way of an on-the-spot fine, the fine is $349 with 3 demerit points.

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