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46.52.010  <<  46.52.020 >>   46.52.030

RCW 46.52.020

Duty in case of personal injury or death or damage to attended vehicle or other property — Penalties.

(1) A driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in the injury to or death of any person or involving striking the body of a deceased person shall immediately stop such vehicle at the scene of such accident or as close thereto as possible but shall then forthwith return to, and in every event remain at, the scene of such accident until he or she has fulfilled the requirements of subsection (3) of this section; every such stop shall be made without obstructing traffic more than is necessary.

     (2)(a) The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting only in damage to a vehicle which is driven or attended by any person or damage to other property must move the vehicle as soon as possible off the roadway or freeway main lanes, shoulders, medians, and adjacent areas to a location on an exit ramp shoulder, the frontage road, the nearest suitable cross street, or other suitable location. The driver shall remain at the suitable location until he or she has fulfilled the requirements of subsection (3) of this section. Moving the vehicle in no way affects fault for an accident.

     (b) A law enforcement officer or representative of the department of transportation may cause a motor vehicle, cargo, or debris to be moved from the roadway; and neither the department of transportation representative, nor anyone acting under the direction of the officer or the department of transportation representative is liable for damage to the motor vehicle, cargo, or debris caused by reasonable efforts of removal.

     (3) Unless otherwise provided in subsection (7) of this section the driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or death of any person, or involving striking the body of a deceased person, or resulting in damage to any vehicle which is driven or attended by any person or damage to other property shall give his or her name, address, insurance company, insurance policy number, and vehicle license number and shall exhibit his or her vehicle driver's license to any person struck or injured or the driver or any occupant of, or any person attending, any such vehicle collided with and shall render to any person injured in such accident reasonable assistance, including the carrying or the making of arrangements for the carrying of such person to a physician or hospital for medical treatment if it is apparent that such treatment is necessary or if such carrying is requested by the injured person or on his or her behalf. Under no circumstances shall the rendering of assistance or other compliance with the provisions of this subsection be evidence of the liability of any driver for such accident.

     (4)(a) Any driver covered by the provisions of subsection (1) of this section failing to stop or comply with any of the requirements of subsection (3) of this section in the case of an accident resulting in death is guilty of a class B felony and, upon conviction, is punishable according to chapter 9A.20 RCW.

     (b) Any driver covered by the provisions of subsection (1) of this section failing to stop or comply with any of the requirements of subsection (3) of this section in the case of an accident resulting in injury is guilty of a class C felony and, upon conviction, is punishable according to chapter 9A.20 RCW.

     (c) Any driver covered by the provisions of subsection (1) of this section failing to stop or comply with any of the requirements of subsection (3) of this section in the case of an accident involving striking the body of a deceased person is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

     (d) This subsection shall not apply to any person injured or incapacitated by such accident to the extent of being physically incapable of complying with this section.

     (5) Any driver covered by the provisions of subsection (2) of this section failing to stop or to comply with any of the requirements of subsection (3) of this section under said circumstances shall be guilty of a gross misdemeanor: PROVIDED, That this provision shall not apply to any person injured or incapacitated by such accident to the extent of being physically incapable of complying herewith.

     (6) The license or permit to drive or any nonresident privilege to drive of any person convicted under this section or any local ordinance consisting of substantially the same language as this section of failure to stop and give information or render aid following an accident with any vehicle driven or attended by any person shall be revoked by the department.

     (7) If none of the persons specified are in condition to receive the information to which they otherwise would be entitled under subsection (3) of this section, and no police officer is present, the driver of any vehicle involved in such accident after fulfilling all other requirements of subsections (1) and (3) of this section insofar as possible on his or her part to be performed, shall forthwith report such accident to the nearest office of the duly authorized police authority and submit thereto the information specified in subsection (3) of this section.

[2002 c 194 § 1; 2001 c 145 § 1; 2000 c 66 § 1; 1990 c 210 § 2; 1980 c 97 § 1; 1979 ex.s. c 136 § 80; 1975-'76 2nd ex.s. c 18 § 1. Prior: 1975 1st ex.s. c 210 § 1; 1975 c 62 § 14; 1967 c 32 § 53; 1961 c 12 § 46.52.020; prior: 1937 c 189 § 134; RRS § 6360-134; 1927 c 309 § 50, part; RRS § 6362-50, part.]

Notes:

Rules of court:  Bail in criminal traffic offense cases -- Mandatory appearance -- CrRLJ 3.2.

     Effective date -- 1980 c 97: "This 1980 act shall take effect on July 1, 1980." [1980 c 97 § 3.]

     Effective date -- Severability -- 1979 ex.s. c 136: See notes following RCW 46.63.010.

     Severability -- 1975 c 62: See note following RCW 36.75.010.

Arrest of person violating duty in case of injury to or death of person or damage to attended vehicle: RCW 10.31.100.