If you’ve been injured in an accident involving an 18-wheeler or semi-truck, it is of the utmost importance that you document the wreck in order to build a strong foundation for a personal injury case. The following are three of the most important records you can obtain for your truck accident claim.
The crash report is created by the police officer who comes to the scene and documents the investigation. Oftentimes, that means just recording such basic information as the identities of the drivers and vehicles as well as insurance information. A crash report will also list witnesses and note if any parties were transported by emergency services and where they were taken for treatment. The officer will typically give a narrative opinion as to what they believe happened based on their investigation, as well as record statements of any witnesses.
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In many cases, the officer’s opinion is very valuable in determining what happened. If the officer’s opinion is not favorable to you, it doesn’t mean you don’t have a case. However, it does create quite a hurdle to overcome, as the insurance companies typically base their opinion on what happened primarily on the officer’s report.
Officers occasionally get it wrong, and the use of experts and other investigations show that the officer was incorrect. There are times when the police may bring an officer out to the scene who is a member of the state’s department of public safety and who specializes in commercial motor vehicles. That officer can perform a more thorough inspection based on an extensive knowledge of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations to verify whether the driver has complied with those regulations.
An important item to obtain when investigating 18-wheeler and semi-truck accidents is an open records report from the police department. This will provide additional information, such as when the officers were first contacted and the radio traffic back and forth identifying the vehicles. From that, we can often identify the owner of the vehicle and sometimes even the insurance company. which helps in the event that information in the report doesn’t seem to be accurate. We can also get transcripts from the 911 calls through this, which can help us identify the callers and potential witnesses who may provide valuable testimony in the matter.
Experienced 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyers
The nationwide truck accident attorneys at Zinda Law Group can help you through the difficult time following an 18-wheeler or semi-truck accident. Our personal injury attorneys are highly experienced at handling truck accident cases and will give your case the personal attention it deserves. Call us at (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation.