In order to win financial compensation after a truck accident, whether in the form of an insurance settlement or a verdict at trial, you need evidence. You need evidence of liability (i.e. that the truck driver, trucking company or some other third party was at fault in the accident), and you need evidence of the financial and non-financial consequences of your injuries.
In a typical truck accident case, there will be numerous forms of evidence available. Collecting this evidence – and understanding how each piece of evidence impacts your case – is critical to maximizing your financial recovery.
7 Types of Evidence in Truck Accident Cases
Some of the most common forms of evidence used to pursue financial compensation in truck accident cases include:
1. Forensic Evidence
After a commercial truck accident, conducting a prompt investigation is critical. Skid marks, vehicle damage, evidence of truck defects or improper cargo storage, and other forms of forensic evidence all need to be collected and documented as soon as possible.
2. Accident Reconstruction
Accident reconstruction is a method of visually demonstrating the causes and effects of traumatic accidents using evidence and data collected at the scene. In complex truck accident cases, it can be an essential form of evidence for establishing liability.
3. Phone Records
It is no secret that many truck drivers use their phones during long hauls. If distracted driving played a role in your accident, the truck driver’s phone records can be used to prove that he or she was talking or texting in the moments leading up to the collision.
4. Driving Logs
Under federal motor carrier regulations, truck drivers and trucking companies are required to maintain driving logs that document drivers’ hours spent behind the wheel. Driving logs can be useful for a variety of purposes, including to help establish that a truck driver was fatigued behind the wheel.
5. Employment Records
While trucking companies can often be held liable for truck drivers’ mistakes, in many cases they will be directly liable for their own negligence as well. For example, a trucking company’s employment records may show that the company failed to conduct appropriate background checks or otherwise screen its employees.
6. Witness Testimony
There will often be numerous witnesses to truck accidents, and in many cases these witnesses will be able to provide key testimony in support of the victims’ claims for financial compensation.
7. Medical Records
Medical records are among the most important pieces of evidence in any accident case. Your medical records will be critical to establishing:
- The cause of your injuries
- The extent of your injuries
- The immediate and long-term effects of your injuries
- The costs of your ongoing and future medical care
These are just some of the most common examples. Police reports, traffic camera video footage, interrogatory answers and deposition testimony, social media and countless other forms of evidence may potentially be available as well. We also generally recommend that our clients maintain a diary or journal documenting all of the ways in which their injuries impact their lives. The key is to not leave any stone unturned, and the best thing you can do after an accident is to seek legal representation right away.
Contact the Houston 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard LLP
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a commercial truck accident, we encourage you to contact us 24/7 for a free consultation. To speak with an attorney about the steps you should be taking to protect your legal rights, call (800) 489-2216 or send us a message online now.