When tractor-trailers collide with automobiles, the outcome can be quite tragic. An early investigation is necessary to recoup any compensation. Your lawyers will need every piece of information they can get, as it can be tough to sue an insurance company.
In fact, usually the most vital pieces of information are uncovered during the initial investigation procedure.
Record Of Duty Log Information
All tractor-trailer drivers and companies require a record of duty log. This log contains critical information about the travel habits of the driver including travel routes, list of stops made during the drive, and how long they’ve been driving. This information should be obtained as quickly as possible because regulations from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration only require that the data is retained for six months. After six months, the trucking company and driver most likely have disposed of them.
Having this record of duty log tends to support two central claims as the cause of accidents between tractor-trailers and automobiles. These are speeding and fatigued drivers. By understanding the routes and the stops, it can be reasonably calculated how long it should take from one location to the next. If the big rig driver was way ahead of schedule, a lawyer might argue that the driver was speeding.
Commercial truck drivers have restrictions. They aren’t allowed to drive tractor-trailers for more than 11 hours at a time. After this, they must take a full 10 hours off before getting behind the wheel again. The logbook can potentially give key evidence to show a big rig driver didn’t take the proper off-time or was driving longer than the law allows.
Black Box Recovery
Semi trucks have black boxes on board that record vital information about the status of the truck’s electric system during travel. These boxes are formally referred to as the electronic control module. Shortly after an accident occurs, it becomes exceedingly important to obtain the information on the black box of the semi-truck. The data can provide crucial evidence such as truck speed and part failures which could’ve caused the accident. If not retrieved quickly, the data in the black box may be overwritten if the truck is put back into service.
Accident Scene Documentation
The early investigation process allows for a quick response team to arrive and document all of the details of the aftermath of the accident. Videos, photographs, identifying witnesses, and getting statements are all part of the job of the quick response team. It is imperative to ensure that as much information is freshly documented to reflect on later during the legal case.
Having an early investigation underway is a necessary part of constructing any legal case. Never let this key evidence slip away by neglecting hiring professionals to do a rapid investigation.
If you were involved in a tractor-trailer accident, seek the help of a personal injury attorney. The office of E. Orum Young has over 35 years of experience working with clients to get the compensation they deserve. Our Trial Guarantee ensures that, per your request, your case will get its time in court. Contact us today at (318) 450-6453 for a free case evaluation. We are available to talk 24/7.