Pieces of Evidence to Strengthen Your Truck Accident Case in Washington
The Evergreen State is no stranger to trucks. No matter what you call them – big rigs, 18-wheelers, or tractor-trailers – these beasts of the road are busy moving and hauling. Fully loaded, they can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Even empty, these massive machines are an impressive 35,000 pounds. With that kind of weight, the results can be devastating if they collide with a passenger vehicle.
If you’ve been a big rig accident victim and are concerned about what’s next, reach out to a Herschensohn law truck accident attorney. One of their experienced truck accident lawyers can help you to prepare a strong case and help you to get the compensation you deserve.
The 5 Best Pieces of Evidence to Strengthen Your Truck Accident Lawsuit
To win a successful truck accident personal injury lawsuit, your success will depend on the strength of your evidence. Hearsay isn’t admissible; you’ll need to present hard evidence that the truck driver was both negligent and due to their negligence, you sustained damages. The best way to present strong evidence is to work with an experienced Washington truck accident lawyer.
Don’t delay in obtaining legal representation. Washington’s personal injury statute of limitations is 3 years. Gathering evidence is a crucial part of getting a sizable settlement and can be time-consuming and exhaustive. If you fail to file within 3 years of the accident, you’ll lose all legal rights to seek compensation. The clock starts ticking on the date of the accident.
As part of any accident investigation, the local police department will assess the scene and report what happened. This report may or may not place blame on the truck driver, but the accident report is still a crucial piece of evidence for your case. Your legal team can help to prove the truck driver acted carelessly and caused the accident.
Oftentimes the police will request a certified truck inspector to come to the accident scene and look for indications as to what happened. They’ll investigate whether the load was unbalanced or the truck tires had improper tread. This information can help to strengthen your case and prove negligence.
Accident scene photos are a good way to make a lasting impression and to prove how devastating the accident was. Photos of the accident scene, including both vehicles, provide a clear view of what happened. Also important are photos of your injuries to help prove that you sustained physical damage.
Other strong evidence is any images collected from stop light cameras or video of the accident from nearby surveillance cameras. Your lawyer can investigate the accident scene to determine if there are any stills or videos of the incident as it occurred.
Black Box Information
Most commercial trucks are equipped with electronic monitoring devices. Of interest to your case are what are commonly referred to as truck black boxes. These devices can include electronic logs which track how many hours the truck driver was driving without proper breaks, which can provide incredibly damning evidence.
Other electronic monitoring equipment that can provide strong evidence to strengthen your case is event data recorders. These devices record driving events such as sudden deceleration or acceleration, driving speeds, and wheel turning. The data these devices preserve can help to strengthen your claim of a negligent truck driver.
Eyewitness statements can provide a first-person narrative of who caused the accident and how it happened. Neutral eyewitnesses have no bias and can help fill in the gaps regarding the events that led up to the crash. If there were eyewitnesses, their names and contact information could be found on the police accident report.
Your medical records will help to strengthen your claims of injury. Even if your injuries are obvious, you must submit your medical records as evidence. Typical medical evidence can include:
- First responders report
- Emergency room intake and discharge paperwork
- Physician’s notes, reports, and diagnosis
- X-rays, MRI, and CAT scan images
- Prescription records
- Operative reports
- Healthcare bills and receipts
Your medical records and bills will prove two things. First, you sustained injuries that required medical attention, and second, your treatment has caused you a financial burden. Your personal injury attorney can help you to gather the strongest medical evidence to help you to win a successful settlement.
Strong Evidence Is the Key to a Successful Truck Accident Lawsuit
The strength of your personal injury lawsuit is contingent on the strength of your evidence. Washington state requires that you prove that a negligent act caused the accident and that the accident caused you damages. Working with an experienced truck accident lawyer is the key to a successful lawsuit that awards the largest settlement.
Although there are many different types of evidence, the strongest ones are accident reports, photos, black box details, eyewitness statements, and your entire medical file that clearly outlines your injuries.