After an accident involving a large commercial truck, you likely have many things to address immediately, especially if you or one of your passengers suffered any injuries. Your to-do list should include:
- Getting a comprehensive medical examination, even if you don’t notice any immediate symptoms.
- Collecting as much evidence as possible at the scene of the accident before it is lost or cleaned up.
Evidence to gather
Collecting relevant evidence may help you prevail if there is a dispute about who is responsible for the accident. With commercial truck accidents, not only are you dealing with insurance companies and the other driver, the trucking company may also fight any claim you have.
Small details can become very important and may help you protect your rights to compensation. Here are some tips:
- Talking to others involved the accident: After an accident, it is wise to avoid speaking to others involved in the accident beyond giving them your contact and insurance information. It is normal to have concerns for the well-being of others , but you must be very careful not to apologize or take any blame for the collision. In some instances, if one party apologizes, the other party may assume that is an admission of guilt.
- Talking to law enforcement: Limit your interactions with police at the scene of the accident. Of course, you should answer their questions, but stick to the facts. Don’t admit that you think it was your fault or that you were to blame. Later, obtain a copy of the official accident report so you can check it for inaccuracies.
- Talking to witnesses: If you notice any witnesses to the accident, ask if they will let you record their accounts of the event on your cellphone or in writing. At the very least, get names and numbers of those who saw what happened.
Collecting other documentation
Now that we all carry smartphones with great capacity for video and audio documentation, gathering visual evidence of the accident is much easier than in previous years. Make sure that you take pictures and video of the scene if you are able.
You may want to ask for any security footage from nearby homes or businesses that may have recorded the accident. Don’t wait too long to request this information, as most systems will delete or record over unnecessary footage. These recordings could help you build a more comprehensive picture of the accident, ultimately strengthening your case.
If a commercial truck was involved, you may be able to request the truck driver’s logs. All professional drivers must keep detailed logs of their activities. Reviewing these may shed light on potential causes of the accident.
Recovering from your accident
Building a claim that fully addresses your injuries takes time and effort. The more evidence you gather at the scene, the more options and tools you may have to work with when it’s time to obtain compensation for your losses.