Steps Involved in a Truck Accident Investigation

By | October 3, 2016

Numerous traffic accidents occur every day. With various kinds of vehicles plying on the road, these accidents affect many. Depending on the size, speed and other important factors of the vehicles, the impact of accidents can be disastrous. In severe cases, fatalities may also occur.

Of the many vehicles on the road, trucks are quite dangerous. Owing to the large size and weight of trucks, the impact of accidents with these vehicles is catastrophic. Truck accidents may occur due to a number of reasons. Some of these may include distracted driving, improper road or weather conditions, speeding, other human errors and so on.

The injuries sustained by the victims of truck accidents are quite massive. Some of these can be long-lasting and may cost the victims loss of work etc. Truck accident claims can compensate for the losses incurred by the victims. Proper investigation can ensure that the compensation victims deserve is recovered if the truck driver is at fault.

Let’s take a look at the necessary steps involved in the investigation procedure of truck accidents.

Collecting EDR Information

Most modern vehicles are equipped with Event Data Recorders (EDRs) that gather valuable information about the vehicle and the crash details. These devices are more commonly known as ‘black boxes’. Advanced EDRs collect information about the speed at which the truck was traveling, the speed of the truck at the beginning of the crash, the time at which the maximum change in crash speed occurred, percentage of engine throttle and so on.

In addition to that, the EDRs also record information about the acceleration, position of driver, activities of engine stability control, antilock brakes, air bag deployment and so on. Obtaining the black box information helps in getting valuable insights into the details of the accident. As a result, it helps in determining who is at fault.

Investigating the Crash Site

The scene of the truck accident can provide valuable evidence about the cause of the crash. Therefore, this is one of the crucial sites of investigation. Some of the evidence that truck accidents leave include tread marks, dents in the truck or the vehicle with which it collided, stains left by fluid leakages, debris, skid marks and so on. Such physical evidence can provide powerful insights into how the accident occurred.

In addition to that, taking photographs of the accident site is also crucial. No detail should be missed while photographing. Even the road conditions should be captured for improved chances of recovery of claim. Aerial photography can reveal important details that may be missed while photographing the scene from ground level.

Gathering Witness Statements

Interviewing witnesses is vital as soon as possible after the accident. This is because the details of the crash are fresh in their memories and there is reduced chance of misrepresentation of information. Witnesses may have observed how the collision was initiated. In addition to that, witnesses of the accident can also provide important details about the road and the weather conditions at the time of the collision.

After interviewing key witnesses, their contact details should immediately be noted so that the lawyers can get in touch with them as and when necessary to establish the case in court.

Reviewing the Records of the Truck Company

Many truck accidents occur due to negligence on the truck driver’s part. Reviewing the trucking company’s records will help in determining this. Certain information about the types of drivers the company hires, whether they are appropriately trained to handle such large vehicles, their experience in driving these vehicles etc. can be obtained from the records.

In addition to that, information pertaining to the background check on the drivers, any criminal records, reports about alcohol and drug testing, skill test etc. can also be found out during the investigation. Investigation can also be made into the driving record of the truck driver. These can help in determining who is guilty.

Victims of truck accidents should be aware of the immediate steps to take after an accident. This will help in obtaining the compensation without much hassle. Also, it is important to get in touch with a competent lawyer quickly. If you live in Huston and have been a victim of a truck accident, you should find out more about the Houston 18 wheeler accident lawyers and select the right person for your case.

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