When a crash occurs between a big rig and a passenger car, the occupant of the smaller vehicle often sustains serious injuries.
On behalf of an injured party, prompt scene investigation is essential to determine the cause of the crash and who was responsible.
Prompt investigation of a truck-car crash site is essential for two reasons. First, weather conditions and passing traffic can cause evidence to vanish. Second, the trucking company will launch an investigation of its own, quickly sending insurance agents and lawyers to the scene.
Understanding scene investigation
An advocate for the injured party may engage the services of forensic engineers and traffic accident reconstructionists to perform scene investigation. These professionals will examine the roadway evidence, including:
- Tire tracks and skid marks
- Gouges in dirt or pavement
- Damage to stationary objects like guardrails or telephone poles
- Fluid stains, such as engine oil, brake fluid or blood
- Broken glass
- Points of impact between the vehicles
The professionals will use surveying equipment to take measurements in order to prepare a diagram showing the location of evidence. They will also use photos and video to document the evidence.
When all the evidence is in, an advocate for the injured person may find that multiple parties share liability for the collision. Responsibility may spread among the truck driver, the trucking company, the company that maintains the truck and possibly the company or individual who loaded the cargo. As a result, the victim has the right to expect compensation from various sources to cover medical expenses, lost wages and more.