Since an 18-wheeler can be 30 times heavier than a car, motorists should do everything in their power to avoid a truck accident. Because of the sheer weight of semi-trucks, most fatalities in large truck crashes are passenger vehicle occupants, and even those who survive typically sustain severe injuries. To recover compensation for the resulting damages—which can have lifelong repercussions—truck accident victims should start gathering evidence before even leaving the scene.
At the Scene
If you are physically able to get up and move around following the crash, it is wise to start gathering potential evidence immediately. For example, you should document the scene by taking photographs of the collision from all angles. Make sure at least a few photos illustrate the flow of traffic, contain nearby signage, and record the weather and road conditions.
If there are any skid marks at the scene, you should document those, as well. It is also wise to get the names and badge numbers of any officers who respond. This will help you obtain a copy of the official police report without any confusion or unnecessary delays.
During the Discovery Phase
During the discovery phase of the proceedings, there are all kinds of proof that your truck accident attorney may want to obtain. One of the most important pieces of evidence is the record of duty log. By the end of 2019, all carriers must install electronic logging devices in their vehicles, but for now, some truckers still rely on paper logs. Regardless of its format, your attorney will use the data that the log contains to prove the trucker violated local traffic laws or federal transportation regulations.
If the tractor-trailer contained a black box, its data could also provide helpful information regarding the underlying cause of the crash. Other kinds of critical evidence that are typically obtained during the discovery phase include witness testimony, medical records, and statements from expert witnesses.
If you were hurt in a truck accident in New York, turn to Sackstein, Sackstein & Lee, LLP for unparalleled legal guidance during every stage of the claims process. In addition to having convenient office locations in Flushing, Brooklyn, Garden City, and the Bronx, they make home and hospital visits for auto accident victims. You can learn more about their track record of success by visiting their website. To schedule an initial consultation with a compassionate personal injury attorney, call (888) 519-6400.