The Importance of Accident Reconstruction in Truck Accident Claims
When you get seriously injured or lose a loved one in a truck accident, filing a claim can be critical for your long-term well-being. Serious and fatal truck accidents can lead to substantial economic and non-economic costs, and recovering compensation for these costs helps ensure that you will be able to live your life as comfortably as possible.
To file a claim after a truck accident, you need to know who (or what company) to file your claim against. You also need to have proof of that person’s or company’s liability. While there are several ways to determine fault and establish liability after a truck accident, one of the most effective tools is accident reconstruction.
What Is Accident Reconstruction?
Accident reconstruction is a scientific method of determining the cause of a truck accident (or other accident) by piecing together the events leading up to the crash. Accident reconstructionists use the evidence that is available from the scene of the accident and other sources to determine what happened and who (or what company) is responsible.
While accident reconstructionists used to prepare charts and graphics, in the past decade accident reconstruction technology has come a long way. Today, accident reconstructionists use sophisticated programs that analyze crash data to produce detailed and highly accurate computer simulations of crashes in video format.
How Does Accident Reconstruction Help with Truck Accident Claims?
When pursuing a claim for a serious or fatal truck accident in Ohio, accident reconstruction can be extremely helpful. Accurate reconstructions can help spur favorable settlement negotiations; and, when necessary, they can serve as evidence of liability in court. Some of the main ways that accident reconstruction helps with truck accident claims are by showing:
- How the Accident Happened – With enough data, accident reconstructionists can show exactly how an accident happened. They can show each vehicle’s speed and direction of travel, their proximity to one another, and when (and why) things started to go wrong.
- Which Vehicle Triggered the Collision – Accident reconstructionists can use the available data to show which vehicle triggered the collision. Accident reconstruction can also show whether speed was a factor, whether the truck driver drifted out of his or her lane, and whether certain other factors played a role in the crash.
- The Severity and Location of Impact – Along with showing the cause of the accident, accident reconstruction can also show the severity and location of the impact. This can help not only with establishing liability for your (or your loved one’s) truck accident but with demonstrating the accident’s effects as well.
- How the Damage to Each Vehicle Occurred – In severe accident cases, the vehicles involved may be so damaged that it is difficult to tell exactly what happened after the initial impact. Accident reconstructionists can show how the damage occurred, whether from spinning, rolling over, being pushed into another vehicle, or another secondary impact.
- Whether Multiple Parties Share Liability – Oftentimes, multiple parties will share liability for serious and fatal truck accidents. If the truck driver or trucking company isn’t the only one to blame, accident reconstruction can show which other drivers (or third parties) played a role in causing the crash.
These are just examples. While accident reconstruction won’t necessarily help in all cases, when it does help, it can go a long way toward proving the victim’s (or the grieving family’s) legal rights. As a result, obtaining a reconstruction is worth considering in almost every truck accident case, and your lawyer can help you decide whether it makes sense to hire an accident reconstructionist for your claim.
How Do You Obtain a Truck Accident Reconstruction?
When you hire a lawyer for your truck accident claim, your lawyer will recommend working with an accident reconstructionist if it makes sense to do so. Most truck accident lawyers have working relationships with accident reconstructionists who they trust to assist with their clients’ cases.
Like the other costs of pursuing a truck accident claim, you will not pay the cost for accident reconstruction up front. Instead, your law firm will cover the cost on your behalf, and you will only have to repay this cost (along with your other costs) if your claim results in a settlement or verdict. This is a part of the contingency fee structure that is typical for truck accident claims.
Are Truck Accident Reconstructions Always Definitive?
While accident reconstruction can help in many cases, it is not always definitive. In some cases, additional evidence may be required to determine the cause of the accident and establish liability.
For example, if the truck jackknifed or rolled over, further investigation may be necessary to determine why this happened. Driver negligence, brake failure, tire failure and cargo loading errors are all potential factors. While accident reconstruction may show that the truck driver lost control, your lawyer may need to take additional steps to prove whether the truck driver, the trucking company, the shipping company, a tire or brake manufacturer, or another third party holds financial responsibility for the crash.
If you are dealing with the aftermath of a serious or fatal truck accident in Ohio, you don’t need to make any decisions about accident reconstruction right now. The most important thing is simply that you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. Your lawyer can determine what steps are necessary to prove your (or your family’s) legal rights; and, if it makes sense to do so, your lawyer can engage a professional accident reconstructionist on your behalf.
Discuss Your Claim with a Truck Accident Lawyer in Columbus, OH
At Malek & Malek Law Firm, our truck accident lawyers rely on decades of combined experience to help truck accident victims and their families recover just compensation. If you need to file a claim for a truck accident in Ohio, we encourage you to contact us promptly for more information. To speak with an experienced lawyer at our Columbus law offices in confidence, please call 888-444-7440 or request a free consultation online today.