After a car accident, the first thing to take care of is your personal health and wellbeing. Make sure that you are not seriously injured and call 911 if you have any injuries at all.
Next, if you have a cell phone or camera with you, it is important to get pictures of the scene of the accident. Having good pictures of the accident scene and related items will help to protect your legal rights later if there is a law suit or auto insurance claim.
Taking photos of the scene and various details surrounding the crash is a good way to preserve evidence. The pictures will be handy if you need to deal with insurance adjusters who are looking into to your claim. The pictures of the accident scene also will help if you file a personal injury lawsuit. In the end, good car crash photos can help you to construct a successful claim so that you can recover as much money as possible that you are entitled to for your damages and injuries.
The pictures you take can paint a picture of the accident scene, where it happened, the road and weather conditions, and the position of the vehicles involved.
Get the Details
When you think about which pictures to take, it might not seem obvious which details of the crash will be important later. So, the more photos you take, the better. If you have a camera with limited memory, you may need to choose which pictures you take carefully. But if you have a cell phone with a lot of memory, take a lot of photos.
Some of the pictures that you should take include:
- Your car and up-close pictures of the damages sustained
- The other cars in the crash and the damages that they have
- Any skid marks from any vehicle involved in the accident
- Any car parts or shattered glass or debris that is on the road
- The general accident site, such as the parking lot, intersection etc.
- The location and condition of traffic signals and stop signs
- The weather conditions and environment after the crash
- Any clear injuries that you, passengers or other parties have. You will need to get other people’s consent to photograph their injuries.
- Make sure the time and date stamp on your pictures is correct. This could be important if a personal injury lawsuit is filed later.
Different Distances and Angles
It is a good idea to take a wide variety of photos. Try to take pictures from at least three different distances and angles. For pictures that are close up, try to take pictures from one to five feet from the subject or person. Also make sure you take medium distance pictures from 10 to 15 feet away, as well as long distance or panoramic photos from 20 or more feet away.
When you take pictures of cars and the surrounding area, attempt to keep a landmark in each picture to show distance and scale. Also note sun and weather conditions and how they affect the pictures you take, especially ones that involve damage to your car. If you can, use a variety of flash intensities. If you are using a camera and not a cell phone, try to take wide angle photos and other innovative pictures that may better capture details of the scene.
If you decide to file a lawsuit after the crash, show all of your photos to your personal injury attorney. He will get a better idea of the possibilities of your case if he sees as many details of the crash and your injuries as possible.