According to the New Jersey State Police, a total of 574 fatal car accidents occurred in the state in 2016 ,with 605 deaths resulting from those crashes.
The New Jersey Department of Transportation reports that a total of 264,582 motor vehicle accidents occurred in the state in 2015, and that number actually marked a decline from the previous year in which 290,212 collisions were recorded.
While most of us do not like to think about the possibility of a motor vehicle collision when we get behind the wheel of a car or enter a passenger vehicle, the above numbers indicate that car accidents happen with great frequency in our state.
Given the high number of motor vehicle collisions in New Jersey each year, you should be prepared for being involved in a crash.
Pictures can provide invaluable evidence for car accident claims. They can help to prove that the other driver was at fault for the collision.
What else should you know about taking pictures after a car accident? We provide some helpful information for you below.
Be Prepared to Take Photos
Most New Jersey drivers have cameras on their cell phones. However, things could go wrong and keep you from using this camera.
For instance, the accident might cause irreparable damage to your cell phone – especially if you keep it around the dash of your vehicle to use as an mp3 player or as a GPS device. Also, your cell phone could run out of battery power if it was already low prior to the accident.
What can you do to ensure that you will have a device on hand to document the scene?
We recommend that you keep a couple of other items in your glove box. For example, you should always keep a charger for your cell phone in the vehicle so that you can charge it if necessary. This is important for taking photos as well as for contacting law enforcement officials if a crash occurs.
Additionally, you should consider keeping a disposable camera in your glove box. Disposable cameras are now available in digital models, according to this blog article. They can be bought at a relatively low cost.
Photos Can Provide Invaluable Evidence
Pictures can provide some of the most important evidence in a car accident claim. They can be invaluable as your lawyer advocates for your right to recover compensation. Specifically, photographs can show:
- Damage to vehicles
- Injuries to persons
- Environmental factors that may have played a role in the accident
- Additional information for an accident reconstruction expert to use to help prove your case.
You should take as many photographs as you can. You should document all of the following when you are photographing the scene of the crash:
- Interior and exterior vehicle damage, including to damage to your own vehicle and the other driver’s vehicle
- Specific bodily injuries at the time of the crash
- Specific bodily injuries during the healing process
- Any debris on the road
- Any skid marks on the road near the crash
- Traffic lights or traffic signs
- Construction zone signage
- Construction materials or any hazard cones or markers
- Evidence of inclement weather (such as rain puddles or fog)
- License plates of all vehicles involved.
What Types of Pictures Should You Take?
You should photograph everything from a wide variety of angles and shot scales. You want to have an array of photos that an accident reconstruction expert can use to develop a theory of the crash.
Additionally, you want to have photographs that your New Jersey car accident attorney can use in arguing causation and contending that the other driver’s negligence caused the accident.
In the aftermath of a car accident, we understand that you may be disoriented, and that you may be suffering from personal injuries. If you are able to do so, however, photograph the scene with as much precision as you can. Here are some recommendations:
- Take multiple photos of the same thing
- Take photographs from multiple shot scales (some close-up shots, some wider shots that show damage and injuries in relation to the rest of the scene and, if possible, a panoramic shot that details the entire scene of the crash)
- Take photographs from various angles (high angles, low angles, straight angles and any other position that helps to provide additional information about the damage or injuries).
How Your Lawyer Can Use Car Accident Photos
At Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., we are committed to helping New Jersey residents who have been injured in car accidents. We want to ensure that you are prepared in the event of a crash. One of the most important ways to be prepared is to understand the importance of taking photos after a car accident.
We can use the photos you take as evidence that the other driver was at fault in the crash, which can help as we seek compensation for your losses.
If you were injured in a car accident and have questions about filing a claim for compensation, an experienced New Jersey car accident attorney can help. Contact us today to discuss your case.