Truck accidents are often complicated and can result in severe consequences for those involved. Preserving evidence in the aftermath of an accident is important, as it forms the foundation for building a strong legal claim. If you have been involved in an 18-wheeler accident, act swiftly to preserve evidence and empower your attorneys to build a robust case on your behalf.
A seasoned Gulfport truck accident attorney will gather and present strong evidence to prove liability of the at-fault truck driver and the trucking company and get you the maximum financial compensation you are entitled to.
Types of Evidence in Truck Accident Claims and its Importance
There are several highways and intersections in Gulfport, such as I-10, I-59, US-49, and US-90 that are prone to truck accidents. Here are a few types of evidence your attorney will gather if you find yourself in a truck accident:
Accident Scene Documentation
- Types: Photographs, videos, and sketches capturing the scene of the accident, including vehicle positions, road conditions, and traffic signals.
- Importance: Provides a visual representation of the accident, aiding in accident reconstruction, determining liability, and establishing the context of the collision.
Skid Marks and Debris
- Types: Documentation of skid marks on the road and the collection of relevant debris patterns.
- Importance: Offers insights into the dynamics of the collision, helping in accident reconstruction and providing evidence of vehicle movements and forces involved.
Vehicle Damage Documentation
- Types: Photographs showcasing the damage sustained by vehicles involved in the accident.
- Importance: Provides tangible evidence of the impact and severity of the collision, aiding in assessing the extent of damages and determining liability.
Electronic Data Recorders (EDRs)
- Types: Data extracted from the truck’s EDR, including information on speed, braking, and other performance metrics.
- Importance: Offers objective data on the truck’s actions leading up to the accident, helping establish facts and contributing to accident reconstruction.
Driver Records and Compliance
- Types: Driver qualification files, logs, and records related to compliance with regulations.
- Importance: Establishes whether the truck driver adhered to safety regulations, including driving hours and licensing, influencing the determination of liability.
Maintenance and Inspection Records
- Types: Records detailing the truck’s maintenance history, inspections, and repairs.
- Importance: Identifies any mechanical issues or failures that may have contributed to the accident, influencing liability, and supporting claims for negligence.
- Types: Video recordings from Gulfport area traffic cameras, nearby businesses, or dashcams.
- Importance: Offers an unbiased and objective account of the events, corroborating or challenging witness statements and providing additional perspectives on the accident.
- Types: Testimonies from individuals who witnessed the accident.
- Importance: Adds a human perspective to the case, influencing the trier of fact, and can corroborate or challenge other forms of evidence.
Police Reports and Citations
- Types: Official reports from law enforcement and any citations issued at the scene.
- Importance: Provides an authoritative account of the accident, includes statements from involved parties, and may identify traffic violations influencing liability.
Expert Witness Testimony
- Types: Statements from experts in accident reconstruction, trucking regulations, or other relevant fields.
- Importance: Offers specialized insights to help the court understand complex technical aspects, strengthening the case.
Preserving Evidence is a Time-Sensitive Matter
Spoliation refers to the loss, destruction, or alteration of evidence. Acting promptly prevents the spoliation of evidence, preserving its original state and credibility. Delays increase the risk of evidence being compromised or lost.
Witnesses, including parties involved and bystanders, may forget details over time. Gathering eyewitness accounts and statements promptly captures fresh memories, providing more accurate and reliable information for the case.
Timely Accident Scene Preservation
Accident scenes change over time due to weather, traffic, and other factors. Swiftly documenting the accident scene with photographs and measurements ensures an accurate representation, aiding in accident reconstruction and establishing facts.
Digital Evidence Preservation
Digital evidence, including emails, surveillance footage, or electronic records, is susceptible to loss or corruption. Promptly securing and preserving digital evidence prevents the risk of data loss, manipulation, or system updates that could compromise its integrity.
Delays increase the risk of evidence being tampered with or altered. Swift preservation protects evidence from external influences, maintaining its authenticity and reliability for legal proceedings.
Statute of Limitations
Legal statutes often set time limits for initiating legal actions. Complying with these time limits is important. Failure to preserve evidence promptly may lead to the exclusion of vital information from the claim.
Rules of Evidence
Gulfport area courts have specific rules regarding the admissibility of evidence. Timely preservation ensures that evidence meets the criteria for admissibility, preventing challenges to its validity during legal proceedings.
Protecting Against Evidence Destruction
Evidence may be intentionally or accidentally destroyed if not preserved promptly. Swift action protects against intentional or accidental destruction of the evidence, preserving its value.
How an Experienced Truck Accident Lawyer Can Help Preserve Evidence?
Knowledgeable Gulfport truck crash lawyers can conduct a thorough early case assessment to identify vital evidence and potential areas of weakness. This helps in formulating a comprehensive strategy for evidence preservation. Your attorney can take the necessary steps to issue legal holds and preservation notices to relevant parties. This is necessary to prevent the destruction, alteration, or loss of important information.
They can also utilize discovery tools, such as interrogatories and requests for production, to formally request evidence from the opposing party. The law firm you hire will work with e-discovery specialists to identify, collect, and preserve electronic data relevant to the case. They can also file motions when necessary to compel the opposing party to preserve evidence or to address any concerns about potential spoliation.
Get Legal Representation from a Proven Gulfport, MS Truck Accident Attorney
The highly rated truck accident attorneys at Boyce Holleman & Associates have demonstrated their ability to obtain substantial settlements and verdicts for our clients. From accident reconstruction to scrutinizing driver logs and maintenance records, we build a solid case based on compelling evidence. To request your free consultation with our legal team, call us at 228.338.2691 or complete this online form.