Securing Your Truck Accident Claim With the Right Evidence
When deciding whether, how, or when you should pursue a truck injury claim, the first thing you need to consider is liability.
- Who was at fault?
- Can you prove negligence?
- Is there enough evidence to convince a jury?
As the plaintiff in a traffic injury case, the burden of proof will be on you. You are claiming that someone acted in an unreasonable manner that led to your injuries. You will need to provide “the preponderance of evidence”—more and better evidence than the other side—to prove your claim.
The good news is that there are lots of different types of evidence and lots of ways to collect it. The bad news: a lot of evidence is tricky to secure without help and without a thorough understanding of the law.
Although you may feel that the fault of your accident is clearly placed on the truck driver, his insurance company may disagree and claim the circumstances of the accident a little vague. Furthermore, fault may lie in the hands of more than just the trucker. Depending on the situation, the trucker’s boss, the truck company, and even the cargo owner may also be liable for your injuries.
However, in order to prove fault, you need evidence. Evidence such as:
- Documentation. In this age, almost every action, movement, or decision involves records and paperwork. In cases of truck accidents, these records can be used as evidence to show events that happened before, during, and after a collision. Was either party distracted by incoming texts or calls? Was the trucker obeying hours of service regulations? When did the trucker last sleep? Ideal types of documentation that can answer these questions include police reports, photographs of the accident scene, cell phone records, truck’s maintenance records, truck driver logs, toxicology reports, hotel receipts, dispatch records, and many other items.
- Witness statements. Third-party testimony can go a long way in helping jurors understand exactly what happened and who was to blame for the accident. Whether the witness explicitly saw the accident or events leading up to it, his account can lend credence to your claim. Expert witnesses can testify about the your medical care and condition, your future employability, and many other facts to help determine the damages you deserve.
- Technical records. Technology can be used to improve safety and efficiency in daily operations, but it can also help pinpoint what may have led to your accident, such as speeding, swerving, or driving over duty limits. Today, many commercial trucking companies have adopted technology similar to aerial “black boxes.” These traffic recording devices can measure the truck’s performance—including speed and braking patterns—as well as the truck’s operation times. Other technologies onboard can track the truck’s location (GPS), or determine mechanical problems (advanced warning systems). While computer simulated reconstructions of the accident can show jurors exactly what happened at the time of the collision.
Investigating the Accident and Gathering the Evidence
Before deciding to file a claim, get in touch with an experienced truck accident attorney to ensure that the evidence necessary to prove your claim is not lost. In addition to sending spoliation letters to ensure evidence is not destroyed, attorney Steve Lee can also request copies of reports, file for admission of technological records, and oversee witness depositions to guarantee your claim has the merit it needs to be successful.
Our office is dedicated to helping clients like you secure the proof they need to recover damages for their injuries. For a free initial consultation, please contact our law office at 1-800-232-3711 or fill out our online contact form today.