The emotions after a car accident can range from shock and confusion to angry and frustrated. In those minutes after a car accident, you may feel overwhelmed and unsure what you need to do. Of course, the first step is to call 911 to report the crash and request emergency help.
However, it is important to try to regain your composure so that you can note certain facts that may be very important in the future. Fortunately, with the technology we have today, documenting a car accident today is much easier than it has ever been in the past.
Traffic Accidents of the Past
Just two decades ago, when you were involved in a car accident, your only means of documenting the accident was to try to find a piece of paper and something to write with so you could jot down notes and maybe a rough sketch of the crash scene. The police officers reporting to the accident scene were responsible for documenting the scene.
If the vehicles had been moved, the officers had a more difficult job determining what happened. They had to rely on what the drivers and any witnesses told them. If there were no skid marks or other physical evidence at the accident scene to indicate the position of the vehicles at the time of the crash, fault for the crash could come down to a “he said, she said” situation.
Cell Phones Changed How We Document Accidents
When cell phones first entered the consumer market, they were just “phones.” Cell phones soon evolved allowing us to text one another and then to take pictures and videos. Today, cell phones are more like computers than telephones. Today, nearly every driver has a cell phone with a camera. This allows drivers to document an accident scene immediately after the accident occurs and before the vehicles are moved. Even a few quick snapshots or a video of the accident scene before the vehicles are moved can be the very piece of evidence that helps prove fault in a traffic accident.
If possible, take pictures or video of the accident scene before the cars are moved. You should also photograph other details at the scene such as skid marks, traffic signs, visual impairments, and road hazards that could have been a factor in the cause of the crash. By taking pictures and videos of the accident scene, you reduce the possibility that conflicting accounts could impact your ability to recover compensation for your damages.
When taking videos or making photographs of the scene, you need to be very careful. Do not place yourself or others in danger to take photographs. Only take pictures from a safe distance and location. In addition to taking photographs, you can also use your cell phone to take notes of important details that you want to remember about the accident.
Cell phones are great tools at an accident scene for documenting the accident. However, we believe in being prepared. Therefore, we also suggest you place a disposable camera in your vehicle in case your cell phone is damaged, or the battery dies. A disposable camera may not allow you to video the scene, but you can still take several pictures to document the scene.
Call an Erie Car Accident Attorney for a Free Appointment
Dealing with an insurance claim can be aggravating and stressful. Insurance adjusters are not always upfront and easy to work with when negotiating a settlement. We can help. Our Erie car accident attorneys can handle your accident claim so that you can focus on other matters. You do not have to deal with this alone — our entire legal team is here to help you seek a fair and just settlement for your injuries.
Call The Travis Law Firm at (800) 401-2066 to request a free legal consultation with an experienced Pennsylvania car accident attorney.