If you've been in an auto collision, one of the best ways to protect your rights is to gather evidence as soon as possible. That way, you'll be prepared if you end up making a personal injury claim against the other driver.

If you are in a condition to take pictures immediately after the collision and have a camera or your phone handy, you should take pictures of the accident scene. Take pictures of the area of the collision from all directions--close-ups as well as pictures from further away. You never know at that moment which angles best illustrate the accident scene, so it is always best to take pictures from as many angles as possible. If either or both vehicles left skid marks, definitely take pictures of those. This is where you want to shoot from further away so that you can have a panoramic view of the skid marks.

You also want to take pictures of any traffic control devices (e.g., traffic lights or stop or yield signs) at the scene. In your pictures, you want to make clear who had the light or the stop sign.

If you think that someone’s view of the accident scene will be relevant, you would want to take pictures that show the view. For example, if the other driver told you after the collision that he or she couldn’t see you coming, you would want to take pictures that showed how far back the other driver had a view of the accident scene. Remember that, in auto collision litigation, a picture truly is worth a thousand words. If the other driver said that he or she couldn’t see the location, but the pictures show that he or she had a clear view of the location for five hundred feet, then the other driver is likely going to lose because the insurer and the jury will think that he or she simply wasn’t paying attention.

You should also take pictures of both (or all) vehicles involved in the collision. Specifically, you want to photograph the areas of damage from afar and also close-up. The damage to the vehicles can tell insurers and juries a lot about how an auto collision occurred, how fast the drivers were going, and who was at fault. So make sure to get good pictures of the vehicle damage.

Finally, if you were injured, get pictures of your injuries. Pictures of bruises, contusions, wounds, etc. are very powerful tools in convincing an insurance adjuster or a jury about the extent of your injuries.

If you've been injured in an auto collision and have questions about how we can help, give us a call at 253.858.5434 to set up an appointment for a free initial consultation.