Law on a Motorist Failing to Stop and Assist After an Accident in NSW

By Sahar Adatia and Jimmy Singh.

 

A learner motorcyclist in his teens believes he is lucky to be alive after he was just about left for dead on the side of an Adelaide highway after another driver forced a collision with him and failed to assist with his injuries.

On the morning of 5 July 2020, 18-year-old Blair Simpson was riding his motorcycle on the Lonsdale Highway in Hallett Cove when a white van suddenly deviated between lanes around him.

Swerving about, the van then swung back in front of him and quickly slammed the brakes.

Mr Simpson was taken by surprise and collided into the back of the vehicle, resulting in him coming off his motorbike at a rapid pace and tumbling across the road.

The driver of the van simply drove off, ignoring the collision and leaving the injured teenager for dead.

 

Mr Simpson Urges Motorist Who Failed to Assist to Come Forward Over the Collision 

Mr Simpson, an L-plater who has only been riding motorcycles for a year, managed to get himself up with the help of another motorist and immediately phoned his brother to inform him of the hit-and-run incident.

Speaking to 9News, Mr Simpson’s brother, Corey, said his “heart just dropped”.

“The last time I got a call about someone coming off a motorbike, (it) was my mate Adam – he hit a ute at Mawson lakes about five years ago and died,” Corey said.

Mr Simpson has since spoken out about the ordeal, saying he believes the incident was the result of road rage.

The young tradesman urged the runaway driver to come forward and implored them to acknowledge what they have done and face up to the consequences of the dangerous incident. 

“Own up to what you’ve done and be honest,” Mr Simpson said.

“I’m just in shock that somebody can just drive off like that after hitting a motorcycle rider.”

Since the disturbing crash, Mr Simpson has been left with a damages bill totalling more than $1000.

He is now also unable to travel to work.

The young rider is now pleading for everyone to be careful, giving a warning to other road users travelling around motorcyclists.

“Just look out for us and don’t brake. Check for a motorcycle driver – because it could be worse than what happened,” Mr Simpson said.

Police are still investigating the crash.

The Strict Rules You Must Follow as a Driver If You Are Involved in a Traffic Accident in NSW – Hit and Run Traffic Offences

Failing to Stop and Give Assistance After Impact

As a driver in New South Wales, strict rules exist that you must follow when you are involved in a traffic accident on public roads.

First and foremost, it is the duty of the driver involved in a traffic accident to stop at the scene of the crash and give all necessary assistance within their ability to any injured persons.

In fact, under section 146 Road Transport Act 2013 (NSW), a person who drives a vehicle on a road that gets involved in an impact causing either injury or death to another person will be guilty of an offence if the person either knows or ought reasonably to know that the vehicle’s been involved in an impact causing such harm or death, and where the person fails to stop and give assistance that may be necessary and that’s in the person’s power to give.

The offence attracts heavy penalties, including a maximum penalty of a $3,300 fine or 18 months in jail, or both for a first time offence. This also attracts an automatic driver licence disqualification period of 3-years (or court’s discretionary minimum of 12-months).

For a second or subsequent offender, the maximum penalties are $5,500 fine or two years imprisonment, or both. This also attracts an automatic driver licence disqualification period of 5-years (or court’s discretionary minimum of 2-years).

 

Duty of Driver Involved in a Crash: Failing to Exchange Details After a Traffic Accident

In addition, as a driver involved in a crash, you are required to comply with the following rules under cl 287 of the Road Rules 2014:

  • You must drop at the scene of the crash
  • You must give your required particulars as soon as possible, except in exceptional circumstances, within 24 hours after the crash
  • This must be provided to any other driver (or the driver’s representative) involved in the crash, any other person involved in the crash who’s injured or the person’s representative, and the owner of any property (including any vehicle) damaged in the crash (or the owner’s representative) unless in the case of damage to a vehicle, the particulars are given to the driver of the vehicle (or the driver’s representative).
  • You must also provide the required particulars within the required time frame to a police officer is anyone’s killed or injured in the crash, or if you’ve failed to give your required particulars to each required person outlined earlier, or a vehicle involved in the crash is towed or carried away bu another vehicle, or the police officer asks for any of the required particulars.

According to cl 287, the required particulars that must be exchanged include:

a) the driver’s name and address, and

b) the name and address of the owner of the driver’s vehicle, and

c) the vehicle’s registration number (if any), and

d) any other information necessary to identify the vehicle.

Failure to comply with these requirements attracts a penalty fine of up to $2,200. This penalty only applies if the matter is heard before a court. The police will normally issue either an on-the-spot fine or penalty notice in the mail of $344 carrying 3 demerit points if paid. You may either court-elect this fine if you wish to either dispute it or to plead guilty and avoid the demerit points.

Have a question arising from this topic of law? Call our team of experienced Sydney traffic lawyers today for a free initial consult.

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