Preserving Evidence After a Truck Accident
Evidence is a crucial part of every truck accident case. To obtain compensation for an injury, you must prove that someone else — whether it’s a truck company, truck driver, or another member of the trucking industry — is responsible for what happened. An experienced truck accident lawyer from Swenson & Shelley can help you gather and preserve critical evidence that will serve as the building blocks of your injury claim.
Solid evidence strengthens your case for full and fair compensation. You can recover money for a wide range of losses after a semi-truck crash, such as the cost of medical bills, lost income, lost opportunities, pain and suffering, and more. Damages may also be possible if a spouse suffered due to your injuries. An experienced personal injury attorney can determine what your case is worth after examining the facts.
At Swenson & Shelley, we understand a truck accident can wreak havoc on your life. Let us craft a compelling injury claim demanding maximum compensation for your losses. You can’t rely on the insurance company to hand over the money you deserve, but you can count on our attorneys to fight for every penny. Call or contact us today for a free consultation.
Common Types of Evidence in Truck Accident Cases
A truck accident claim is essentially an argument for why you deserve compensation from the party(s) responsible for a crash. You can’t win your case without evidence. Examples of critical evidence in a truck accident case include:
- Proof of injury – The first step in building a strong truck accident claim is showing you sustained compensable injuries. Proof of injury comes usually comes directly from a victim’s medical records. When truck crash victims suffer psychological or emotional injuries, regular entries from a personal diary can supplement information from medical records or doctors’ opinions.
- Official crash report – Law enforcement officers investigating a truck accident will later write an official crash report. These reports contain helpful information, including contact and insurance details from other drivers, vehicle specifications, citations for traffic violations, and often the officer’s initial determination of who may be at fault.
- Photographs – The people who investigate a crash and determine liability are rarely direct witnesses of the event. This is where you can help your case. Take photographs of the scene if you can. Include shots of vehicle damage, visible injuries, weather and lighting conditions, and other environmental or physical evidence that can establish what transpired.
- Video footage – Video recordings are not always available in the aftermath of a truck accident. But when they are, this footage can be extremely valuable. Video footage from traffic accidents can come from dashcams, public traffic cameras, or security cameras on nearby buildings. These recordings may show when, where, and how a crash occurred.
- Eyewitness statements – The words of a reliable witness with no stake in an injury case’s outcome can carry a lot of weight. Eyewitness statements can be valuable sources of unbiased information, which you can use to support or disprove specific claims.
- Expert testimony – Opinions from expert witnesses can be instrumental in a truck accident case. Medical experts can evaluate victims’ injuries to determine their severity and long-term impact. Accident reconstruction specialists can analyze the evidence to determine how the collision unfolded. Financial planners and vocational experts can testify about projected financial losses and job prospects for crash victims.
- Proof of other losses – Not all losses after a truck accident are physical and psychological. Common examples of additional losses include lost wages, the costs of repairing or replacing damaged property, and intangible losses like lost enjoyment of life. Victims can provide pay stubs, bank records, invoices, and other documentation as proof of these non-injury losses.
- “Black box” data – Many of today’s commercial motor vehicles have electronic control modules (ECMs) or event data recorders (EDRs). These devices, or “black boxes,” record and store data about trucks in operation and when they are involved in crashes or near-crash events. Black boxes can be gold mines of evidence in truck accident cases because they often contain data like the truck’s speed, braking, hard stops, cruise control, seatbelt use, airbag deployment, and tire pressure at the time of a collision.
- Other electronic data – Electronic logging devices (ELDs) are commonly used in modern trucks and may be sources of evidence in certain truck accident cases. ELDs automatically record driving and rest periods, and their data can show whether the truck driver who hit you had skipped a mandatory break and may have been dangerously fatigued at the time of the wreck.
- Cell phone records – Driver distraction is sometimes a factor in truck accident cases. If you suspect a truck driver was texting, talking on a cell phone, or fiddling with an app when the accident occurred, the driver’s cell phone records may illuminate their pre-crash actions.
- GPS records – Many truck drivers and trucking companies rely on GPS apps or devices for turn-by-turn navigation and tracking. And because GPS devices monitor location at a granular level, they can provide helpful information about what a truck was doing at the time of the crash. Depending on how frequently a truck driver’s GPS captures data, you can use these records to determine the precise locations of truck routes and the driver’s average speed and travel time.
Types of Evidence You Can Obtain on Your Own
Some types of evidence can be challenging for a private individual to obtain after a truck accident. You will not be able to collect black box data or phone records without help from an attorney. But there are still ways you can help with preserving evidence after a truck accident.
If your injuries do not prevent you from doing so, take photos at the accident scene, obtain information from other drivers, and politely ask eyewitnesses for statements and contact information. Keep any documentation that could prove your injuries or related losses, such as hospital bills, medical records, income statements, and any communications you may have had with the insurance company before speaking with a truck accident lawyer.
Types of Evidence a Lawyer Can Collect for You
An experienced truck accident attorney has additional ways to collect evidence on behalf of their clients that the average person does not. Many injury attorneys work with private investigators and forensic experts to identify and preserve hard-to-find evidence. Attorneys can also issue spoliation letters to notify at-fault parties of impending cases and forbid the destruction of relevant evidence.
Get Help from a Top Truck Accident Attorney in Utah
Turn to Swenson & Shelley if you need help after a truck accident in Utah. Our legal team is committed to the relentless pursuit of justice for accident victims™. We have helped thousands of people regain their financial security and peace of mind after suffering serious injuries due to others’ negligence. Let our firm take care of the legal legwork on your case while you focus on healing. Call or contact us now for a free case review.
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What’s important about preserving evidence in a truck accident case?
If you’ve been involved in a truck crash, there are many different kinds of damages that could be awarded. Obviously, you have medical bills for which you could be compensated. If you’ve lost wages, lost opportunities, have or had pain and suffering, or if your ability to enjoy life has been diminished, you can recover for that. If a spouse has had to suffer because of your loss, there’s a potential claim there, as well.
There are a lot of different types of damages that are available to somebody who has been involved in a truck crash. If you have questions about what damages are available, give our office a call.
Contact our dedicated Utah truck accident lawyers at Swenson & Shelley today for a free confidential consultation.
Let our experience work for you.
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