If you peruse a car accident lawyer’s webpage or blog, chances are you will come across “tips” the attorney provides as to what you should do in the aftermath of a car accident. Invariably, many of these lists of “tips” include a recommendation to take pictures of the accident scene and your injuries. To some, this advice may seem odd: after all, most motorists are not professional photographers and may not know what kind of pictures to take after an accident. Not only this, but many motorists may feel this advice is redundant because law enforcement officers often take photographs of the accident scene as part of their investigation. So why should motorists involved in a car accident bother to take out their smartphones and begin snapping away?
Reasons Behind the Advice to Take Pictures and Important Caveats
There are several reasons why it is important for car accident victims (if they are able to do so, of course) to take photographs of the accident scene as soon as possible. First, it may take law enforcement some amount of time to reach the scene. In that time, vehicles may be moved, debris may be cleaned up, and fluids may evaporate. All of these details can provide important clues about the cause of the crash if reviewed by a reconstruction expert, but only if they are reviewed without moving the vehicles or debris any further after the crash.
Secondly, a police officer’s photographs can become lost or unable to be retrieved. This can severely prejudice your car accident case if you were relying on the officer’s photographs to support your case. Not only this, but officers are primarily interested in photographing the resting position of the cars, not your injuries. The investigating officer may not know to take detailed photographs of your bruises and other injuries.
It is important to note that you should not injure yourself further just to take photographs. That is, if you suspect you have a spine, neck, or head injury, or if attempting to move causes you pain, sit still and do only what you feel comfortable doing. Do not aggravate your injuries needlessly. Also, make sure to back your photographs up somewhere safe and give copies to your South Carolina car accident attorney as soon as possible so that they do not become lost if your smartphone breaks.
Taking a Good Picture
When taking pictures of the car accident scene, you want to be able to document as many details as possible. The following are just a few of the things you should attempt to photograph:
- The overall scene (including all cars involved in the accident and as much debris as possible);
- The damage to your car;
- The damage to other individuals’ cars;
- Debris on the roadway;
- Skid marks;
- Car fluid in the roadway;
- Traffic signals or signs near the scene of the crash; and
- Your injuries (cuts, bruises, broken bones, etc.) and the injuries of any loved ones.
Take your photographs and your recollection of the accident to the Greenville car accident lawyers at David R. Price, Jr., P.A. They have been helping Greenville residents injured in motor vehicle collisions recover compensation for years and will help you present your case in a powerful and persuasive manner. Contact them today by calling (864) 271-2636.
David Price is a Personal Injury, Civil Litigation, Collections, and Criminal Defense Attorney who practices in Greenville, SC. He graduated from the University of Georgia School of Law, and has been practicing law for 12 years. David Price believes in helping those who have been injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.