Why Is It Important to Take Photos After an Accident?
Jeffrey Breit—July 18, 2017
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and the statement is certainly true when you are dealing with the aftermath of a motor vehicle accident. Car, truck, or motorcycle crashes can be extremely damaging and often cause severe injuries and substantial material harm. Following an accident, collecting evidence of the damage caused can be crucial in proving liability and causation, and snapping photos are often one of the easiest ways to do so.
While you certainly want to take photos of the accident as soon as you can, there are a few other matters you should see to first. Right after a crash, make sure you and any passengers with you are okay and do not require medical attention. If they do, call 911 immediately. Next, see to the other parties involved and ask if anyone is hurt or requires medical care. After ensuring everyone is okay, call the police to report the accident, if you haven’t already.
Once the most important things are taken care of, you should begin collecting visual evidence. While some people choose to keep disposable cameras in their vehicle for accidents, sometimes images snapped from your phone can carry better quality. Use your best judgment, but remember that a better quality photo can help significantly. Also, if you are using an actual camera, rather than a camera device on your phone, be sure the time stamp is correct.
Begin by taking pictures of the entire scene, including the road, intersection, sidewalk, and general surroundings of the site of the incident. It’s important to record the big picture, not just the details. Include shots of the surrounding weather, such as rain clouds, snow-covered roads, or foggy skies that could have affected the accident your driving ability. If you or the other vehicles involved hit a rail, pole, or another object, take pictures of that as well. Include images of the road, especially those containing any debris or skid marks, which can sometimes reveal details about the crash.
Next, take photos of every vehicle involved in the accident, especially your own. Be sure to use different angles and focus your camera on the damaged area. It’s always best to take too many photos rather than too little, so take as many photos as you can and go through them with your attorney later. Be sure at least a few of the images include the license plate of the car in question to remove and doubt as to whose vehicle it is.
If you are not in immediate need of medical attention, take photos of any injuries you sustained. These images are some of the most important ones you will take, as they can help prove the cause of your injuries and attest to their severity. Be sure to document your injuries if they worsen or change, as some wounds, like bruises, can take a while to show up. If they allow you to do so, you may also take photos of the other people on the scene, including the other motorist, any passengers, witnesses, and the officers who were at the scene of the accident.
Having photographic evidence of your crash can make filing insurance claims, demonstrating injuries and damages, and proving the cause of the crash much easier. However, while photos do help, the legal advice and counsel of an experienced personal injury lawyer is still essential if you wish to receive maximum compensation. If you were in an accident, our firm can provide compassionate legal help so that you can focus on getting back on your feet.
Jeffrey Breit is driven to be the best in personal injury legal representation and has had far-reaching accomplishments that will be felt for years to come. Throughout a successful career as a personal injury lawyer in Virginia Beach and the larger state of Virginia, Jeffrey Breit has continued to work hard to improve the reputation of attorneys representing injured people, as well as training the next generation of trial lawyers.