Establishing fault to collect compensation after crashes with tractor-trailers is complex and involves working with various government agencies. Some evidence comes directly from the scene of the collision, like any other crash involving passenger cars.

However, working with the trucking company and federal government agencies is also necessary for analysis, building a powerful claim, and successfully proving fault. The more evidence you have in Houston truck accident cases, the higher your chances are of obtaining your desired compensation amount. Speak to a dedicated truck accident attorney to learn more.

Commercial Truck Records and Reports

A significant part of the collecting essential proof in cases of truck collisions in Houston comes from the operator or their employer, including:

Black Box Data

Requesting the black box data from the trucking company provides information to help determine the events leading to the traffic event. Examples of the information they provide include the speed at which the trucker was traveling and when they applied the brakes.

Electronic Logging Device Data

Electronic logging devices, or ELDs, record truckers’ on-duty and off-duty hours to ensure they adhere to federal regulations. Fatigued operators have slower reactions and are more likely to make errors. Therefore, laws regulate the maximum hours behind the wheel and the minimum time they remain off-duty.

Dashcam and Surveillance Footage

Many commercial trucks have dash cameras always recording, and state law allows them as long as they do not obstruct the trucker’s view. The dashcams can provide vital evidence to establish fault and receiver damages.

Repair, Maintenance, and Inspection Records

Federal and state laws require trucking companies and drivers to ensure they do regular inspections and take the vehicle for maintenance and repair as necessary. The reports can help determine if they were out of compliance when accidents occur because of defective parts or other mechanical issues.

Additional Evidence to Collect

Some additional evidence in Houston truck crash claims to collect includes the following:

  • Witness statements and contact information
  • Police officer accident reports detailing their investigation
  • Expert opinions and testimony, such as reconstruction experts and mechanics
  • Documentation addressing the extent of damage to the truck and other cars
  • Alcohol and drug testing records if the authorities suspect driver intoxication
  • Cell phone records for everyone involved to determine if they were distracted by texting, browsing the web, or talking on the phone
  • Photographs from the accident scene, including vehicle damage, road debris, and skid marks
  • Information from third-party companies or weight stations detailing the weight and type of freight the tractor-trailer carried when the collision happened

Depending on the case specifics, evidence such as pictures of traffic signs or documentation about weather conditions may also be helpful.

National Transportation Safety Board

Several state and federal agencies investigate major crashes involving transport companies on land, at sea, and in flight. The National Transportation Safety Board is a federal agency responsible for determining the probable cause and safety issues leading to the event, evaluating the data, and creating systems to prevent the problem from happening again.

Further, the agency administers comprehensive transportation safety studies for the public and assists survivors or their family members when the accidents are fatal. The findings and outcome of the investigation can also be crucial evidence to prove fault and collect damages from liable parties.

Call an Attorney about Evidence in Truck Accident Cases in Houston

Collisions involving heavy commercial vehicles, such as 18-wheelers, are often catastrophic, leaving everyone involved with severe injuries and other losses. Therefore, establishing fault to collect compensation from the at-fault party or parties is crucial.

Understanding the trucking industry and federal regulations is essential for conducting a comprehensive investigation to build a strong case. Seeking help and legal guidance from a skilled lawyer regarding evidence in Houston truck accident cases provides countless advantages. Call today to learn more about the process and schedule a consultation if you need help with a claim.