Even in the best-case scenario, collisions between commercial trucks and commuter vehicles can cause long-lasting and often life-altering injuries for occupants of the smaller cars involved. The severity of these injuries—and of the various financial and personal losses they can subsequently cause—make civil recovery especially important for many truck accident victims, which in turn means collecting and preserving evidence of fault is likewise essential in situations like this.
Relevant evidence in Chattanooga truck accident cases can be documentary, photographic, testimonial, or even forensic in nature, and effectively combining these various forms of information into a cohesive claim can be very difficult without professional assistance. By retaining a knowledgeable truck crash attorney, you could make this process much easier on yourself and, in doing so, substantially improve your odds of obtaining the compensation you need.
To compel a named defendant or group of defendants into paying for accident-related damages, an injured civil plaintiff must demonstrate that negligence by the defendant(s) in their claim was the direct cause of their injuries through a “preponderance of evidence.” In practice, this means that plaintiffs must show it is more likely that a defendant’s misconduct proximately caused a truck accident than it is likely that the defendant’s action had no bearing on the plaintiff’s injuries.
Often, the most important pieces of evidence in truck crash claims come directly from the truck involved, from the person driving it, or from the Chattanooga company responsible for operating the truck and employing its driver. An experienced attorney could provide crucial assistance with obtaining and interpreting footage from in-cab cameras, data from a truck’s “black box” recorder, inspection records, and logs indicating work shifts and rest periods for the driver involved in a crash.
Additionally, individual accident victims should make sure to take photos and videos of the damage done to every vehicle involved in their wreck, as well as undergo a professional medical examination and keep copies of all diagnoses and treatment plans in a safe location. It can also be helpful to solicit contact information from witnesses to a wreck, as their statements regarding what happened could provide much-needed context to the objective data provided by other sources.
While federal law establishes several strict requirements for trucking companies regarding document storage and retention, many of these companies still have lawful procedures in place for destroying old records after a certain period of time. Because of this, it is often essential for truck accident victims in Chattanooga seeking evidence for a civil claim to ensure that important information about their incident does not end up lost or destroyed before they can incorporate it into a settlement demand or lawsuit.
A seasoned local lawyer could help make sure crucial evidence is preserved by sending a “spoliation” letter to a defendant trucking company. This letter would highlight specific evidence that may play a role in an upcoming case and serve as notice to the company in question that they should not destroy it no matter what their standard operating protocols are.
Even if it seems obvious that a negligent truck driver was to blame for your injuries, your chances of fair financial recovery are often only as good as the evidence you can present to support your claim. With that in mind, perhaps the most crucial service that a dedicated attorney could provide early on in the litigation process is assistance with securing the information you may need to establish fault for your injuries.
Dealing with evidence in Chattanooga truck accident cases is often a much more straightforward and productive process when you have help from capable legal counsel. Learn more by calling today.