According to Driver Knowledge, approximately three million individuals are injured in automobile accidents each year. If you are in a vehicle accident, it is critical to gather as much evidence to support your case as possible, even if it is clear the other driver is at fault. Snapping pictures of the scene is one of the simplest and most effective ways to gather compelling evidence to support your claim.
Here are a few simple dos and don'ts to keep in mind when taking photographs after a motor vehicle accident.
Do Take Pictures of Multiple Angles and Vantage Points
Taking a single photo of your vehicle or the surroundings doesn't provide an accurate depiction of the scene. Additionally, if you only have a small number of photos, the other driver's attorney could argue the pictures were manipulated to prove you are not at fault for the accident. Snap photos from a variety of angles, distances, and vantage points.
For example, snap photos of the damage caused to your vehicle from across the street and the vantage point of the other driver. If there is a broken guardrail or damage to trees, take pictures of the damage from the viewpoint of your car and the driver's car. Getting photos from multiple vantage points allows you and your attorney to create a more well-rounded picture of what occurred.
Don't Forget to Snap Photos of Your Injuries
Photos of the damage to your vehicle are important for providing proof to your insurance company or convincing the judge that you were not at fault. However, if you were also injured in the crash and do not visit the doctor immediately and take pictures of your injuries, the other driver's attorney could argue that you did not sustain the injuries in the crash.
Take several photographs of your injuries, including scrapes, scratches, bruises. Depending upon the circumstances of the accident, the police may also want to take photos of your injuries as well. Even if this occurs, make sure to take your own photos to provide your attorney.
Continue to take photos of your injuries in the days and weeks after the crash. For example, did a seemingly minor neck injury turn out to be whiplash in the days after the crash? Remember, some injuries and medical issues don't present themselves for several hours or even days after the accident.
Do Back Up the Photos Immediately
Your phone or camera is filled with multiple pictures of your accident. Unfortunately, if your phone is ruined later, all that photographic evidence will be lost. Back up any photos you snap at the scene of the crime as quickly as possible. For example, consider downloading the photos onto your computer and laptop and then onto multiple flash drives.
Photos can also be downloaded and stored in an external hard drive. Store one flash drive in a safe place, such as a safe, and provide another flash drive to your attorney. Photos taken on a phone can be backed up on the cloud or through another photo or file storage service.
Don't Forget to Capture the Smaller Details of the Crash
Finally, while you are snapping photos of your entire vehicle and the scene, make sure to take pictures of the smaller details that will help strengthen your case. For example, take pictures of the cracks in your windshield or the skid marks left behind by the other driver. Take a picture of any damage the other driver did to a stop sign or a tree.
If you are ever involved in an accident, it is critical to take the right photographs to protect yourself in the event that the insurance company won't pay or you are sued by the other driver. Talk to a car accident attorney, such as Kevin Renfro, to learn more.