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Is a California road alert on hit-and-run accidents forthcoming?

Although any vehicle-related personal injury suffered in California or elsewhere is of course unfortunate (and far too often tragic), many of our readers might view hit-and-run accidents as being especially egregious and unconscionable affairs.

It is certainly possible that the driver of a passenger vehicle might inadvertently strike another person -- often a bicyclist or pedestrian adjacent to or near a roadway -- and drive away without knowing he or she has done so. Conversely, though, it is established with great frequency across the country that a hit-and-run accident was the product of wanton, callous and knowing conduct.

One California legislator wants to respond to that in a very direct and purposeful way, noting what he calls the "fundamental disrespect for human life" that is apparent in any accident where a driver knowingly leaves behind an injured accident victim.

In fact, state Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Glendale) recently sponsored legislation that seeks to add a so-called "Yellow Alert" to the existing Amber and Silver alerts that appear on roadways throughout the state. The former alert focuses upon child abductions, with the Silver designation alerting the public to missing seniors.

Gatto's bill has passed through the state Assembly and will next face scrutiny in the California Senate.

Gatto takes pains to make clear that the would-be law would have a narrow focus, with Yellow alerts being signaled only in narrowly defined areas and thus not competing with other alerts occurring across the state. Hit-and-run accidents are local affairs, and the alerts would target very specific geographical areas.

We'll keep readers posted on the legislation as it continues its journey through the lawmaking process.

Source: Fox 40 News, "Should California implement Yellow alerts for hit-and-runs?" Sonseeahray Tonsall, June 3, 2015

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