After being involved in an accident, it is crucial to remain calm during this traumatic and overwhelming time to ensure that you are able to adequately document the scene and support your future claims for compensation. The more evidence you are able to provide, the better your chances will be at succeeding and, as the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Now that many, if not most of us, have a cell phone that is capable of taking pictures, collecting photographic evidence after an accident is something that can be more easily accomplished. However, it is important to know exactly which photos can help strengthen your case. Having photo is important, but having the right photos can make an enormous difference for your personal injury case.
Of course, before you begin to take any photographs of the scene, your top priority should be to make sure everyone involved is safe and that the police have been called to the scene.
Here are some tips on how to take the right photos after you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident:
- Wide-angle shots: Your first photos should be wide-angle shots of the entire accident scene. Having a few good wide-angle photos will provide a clear depiction of how the vehicles look in relation to their surroundings. It can also show what the road and weather conditions were like at the time, giving the accident some context.
- Photographs of the road’s skid marks: After you collect some good wide-angle shots of the scene, you will want to begin focusing on specific details. Take some photographs of the condition of the road and any skid marks. The length and width of skid marks on the road can show which driver attempted to hit the brakes before impact and the direction in which the vehicle was going before and after braking.
- Take pictures of the traffic signs: Next, you will want to take pictures of the traffic signs that are near and around the scene of the accident. These are often great indicators of liability and help determine fault. Your photos should include any traffic lights, stop signs, yield signs, street markings, and other pertinent signs that might provide greater context for the accident. If it is possible, you should also include photos of the signs from different angles to show each vehicle’s position from the sign.
- Include pictures of all vehicles involved: Take as many pictures as you can of the vehicles involved in the accident. It does not matter if you take too many, or if some are redundant. You can take the time to review them later and delete any duplicates or photos that do not serve much of a purpose. For now, just take as many pictures as possible. Include a wide photo that shows the distance and position of the cars from each other, as well as their position on the road relative to any traffic signs and markings. It is also critical to include close-up photos of the conditions of each vehicle and the site of the impact. Any debris from the vehicles present should also be photographed including the location of the debris and how far it is from the vehicles. Additionally, you must take photographs of all identifying information such as license plates and VIN numbers.
- Take pictures of the individuals involved as well as any witnesses: Anyone who was involved in the accident must be photographed, including drivers and passengers. If there were any witnesses present at the scene, you should photograph them as well since this will help you identify those who can provide eyewitness testimony. Be sure to document the physical condition of those involved in the accident and any injuries sustained. These photos might potentially be graphic, but they will help provide critical real-time evidence for your personal injury attorney to use later on in the case.
New Orleans Personal Injury Attorney
If you or someone you love was injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence or recklessness, the Cossé Law Firm is here for you. Backed by over two decades of experience and a proven track record of success in helping injured victims, our New Orleans personal injury attorneys are seasoned advocates who understand the law and how to deal with insurance companies. We have obtained millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our clients and would be honored to do the same for you and your family. Let us put our experience, knowledge, and unique insights to work for you.
Our team is ready to fight for you and help you obtain the compensation you need and deserve to move forward. Contact our office today at (504) 265-1600 to schedule a free consultation.