Think about the last serious car accident you witnessed or drove by. You probably remember details like loud noises, police on the scene, emergency responders loading injured victims into ambulances, traffic congestion and debris from damaged vehicles strewn across the road.
These are often the details people remember about an accident. However, far more information is needed to determine what happened and who is to blame for the crash, including the following types of evidence.
- Photographs of the scene to document signage, weather and road conditions
- Photographs of the damage
- Video of the other driver
- Statements from eyewitnesses
- Data from an accident reconstructionist
- Surveillance video from nearby businesses
- Police reports
- Cellphone records
The first four types of evidence can often be collected by victims on the scene if they are able to do so. Using their own phone, a camera and/or a notepad and pen, people involved in the crash can document several critical details of the accident.
The remaining types of evidence can be far more difficult for individuals to collect. This is particularly true if they are severely injured in the accident or are not familiar with law enforcement procedures or legal processes.
Whether evidence is collected by victims on the scene or by legal professionals on behalf of the victims weeks later, it can reveal what people were doing in the moments before a crash as well as the factors that likely contributed to the crash. It can also clear up conflicting accounts. As such, it is vital to collect and preserve evidence properly.
Considering how much evidence there may be and the difficulties that can come with preserving it, consulting an attorney who can facilitate evidence recovery in order to build a claim for compensation after a serious accident can be wise.