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Harsher Penalties Aim To Curb Hit And Runs, Protect Pedestrians

If you're thinking of leaving the scene of an accident in Nevada, you might want to think again. 

Hit and run accidents that incur bodily harm or other damage will now mean prison time, according to new and exanded traffic laws that took effect last week. 

Governor Brian Sandoval signed the bills that deal with the new traffic laws earlier this year after they passed the 2015 Legislature. 

Hit and runs have been a problem in the state, according to Nevada Department of Transportation public information officer Tony Illia, because of the harsh penalties for DUI offenses. 

On average, Illia said, the Nevada Highway Patrol receives up to 10 calls a day for hit and run accidents. 

In addition to the harsher penalties for hit and runs, drivers can no longer make U-turns, or pass another vehicle in a school zone. Fines will be doubled for such offenses. 

The laws also will allow speed limits to be raised to 80 mph in some areas, but Illia said there are still safety tests to be completed before enacting those new speed limits. 

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Tony Illia, public information officer, Nevada Department of Transportation 

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