Preserving Evidence in Trucking Accident Cases
If you ever attempt to pursue a claim for any type of injury, you need to build a strong case. If you were injured in an accident with any kind of a commercial truck, you have a small window of time to obtain critical evidence necessary to prove your claim. If you are facing medical bills, loss of wages, pain and suffering or property damage to your vehicle, you may be able to build a case against the truck driver, trucking company, third party or the manufacturer of the truck. The evidence you obtain will be fundamentally necessary to prove that their negligence caused your injuries. The preservation of evidence in a trucking case is vital to building your personal injury case.
Type of Evidence Required for a Trucking Accident Case
Your case will need both physical and electronic evidence in its original condition with respect to the truck, the truck driver, the trucking company, and the trucking manufacturer. In order to prove that another entity or person acted negligently, the following types of evidence are typically required to prove a trucking accident case.
- The contact information and insurance documents of any other drivers involved in the accident.
- The contact information of any witnesses to the accident.
- The “black box” of the truck, which maintains the data regarding speed, braking history, the length of time the truck was in operation, the GPS locations, communications between the truck and trucking company, and daily inspection reports.
- Daily, annual and roadside inspection records
- Truck driver’s daily logs
- All records regarding the maintenance and/or repairs of the truck
- Any diagnostic testing performed on the truck, and the results of such testing
- The training received by the truck driver
- The employment history of the truck driver
- Any federal or state complaints that exist against the truck driver or trucking company
Immediately following an accident, a trucking company representative or insurance agent for the trucking company may rush to the scene in an attempt to prevent other parties from obtaining evidence regarding the accident. You should make an attempt, if you are physically able to do so, to take photographs or video of the scene of the accident from all angles.
As soon as possible after a trucking accident, you should issue a spoliation letter to any party that may be responsible for the trucking accident, including the truck driver, the trucking company, or the trucking manufacturer. This letter must emphasize that all parties associated with the trucking accident have a legal obligation to preserve all evidence related to the accident, even if they would otherwise have the legal right to destroy it. This spoliation letter places all parties on notice that you are intending to pursue litigation. Additionally, if any party that receives the letter fails to preserve evidence may face additional punitive damages, monetary sanctions or even criminal charges.
Let Us Help You Today
If you were in a trucking accident, the preservation of evidence is critical to your case. Contact an experienced Columbia truck accident attorney at The Stanley Law Group at 803-799-4700 to schedule a free consultation regarding your trucking accident and to ensure the evidence related to your claim is preserved.