There is no doubt that commercial truckers rule the road in Indiana. The large number of massive semi-trucks out there means that they are in charge when meeting up with commuters and travelers in passenger vehicles. It turns out that when a collision occurs, they are also in charge of vital evidence that could prove their negligence and support your claim for compensation. That is one of the many reasons it’s so important that you work with an experienced Indianapolis truck accident attorney when you have been seriously injured in a truck crash. We explain what evidence you will need to prove your case against a trucking company and how our team of Indiana truck crash lawyers plays a vital role in securing a successful outcome.
Key Evidence of Indiana Truck Driver Negligence
Because trucking companies are required by federal law to keep certain records, they hold a lot of potential evidence when something an Indiana truck accident occurs. While surveillance camera footage, eyewitness testimony, police reports, and car dashcam video might be readily available, it will take some legal wrangling to get ahold of the evidence the trucking company has.
This evidence might include:
- The truck’s electronic logging device. Sometimes called the truck’s “Black Box,” all trucks are required to be fitted with a device that tracks speed, rest breaks, braking patterns, and more. This can provide irrefutable evidence of driver error.
- The driver’s cell phone data. If the truck driver was distracted by their phone at the time of the crash, data from the phone would prove it. It is against federal law for a truck driver to text and drive, so this could be key evidence in proving fault.
- Truck maintenance records. If a mechanical problem was the root cause of the crash, the truck’s inspection and repair records would be key to proving negligence.
- Truck company’s employment records. Was the driver properly vetted when he or she was hired? Were they adequately trained? Has the employer conducted drug tests and health screenings as required by law? These important questions can be answered with the company’s employment records.
- The truck company’s safety record. If the trucking company has been cited for violations in the past, this could help your claim of negligence.
- The driver’s safety records. Proof of a driver’s history of safety violations could help you hold the driver’s employer liable as well as the driver. The trucking company is required to maintain records of the driver’s traffic tickets, failed drug tests, and other violations. If these records show that the employer knew that the trucker was not a safe driver but let him drive anyway, they could be liable.
- Evidence from the scene. If the trucking company participated in the clean-up of the crash, they might have important physical evidence, such as debris, lost cargo, tire treads, and more.
So, how do you go about securing all of this valuable evidence? You don’t. Your injury lawyer does!
This Letter Is Key to a Successful Indiana Truck Accident Claim
A letter of spoliation is a document that a lawyer can send to all parties involved in a commercial truck accident. It informs them of the potential for a civil claim and reminds them of their duty not to destroy evidence related to the crash. The letter does not have to be very detailed to serve the purpose, but it needs to get the point across that your client expects to have access to all relevant evidence. It is important that this letter is sent as soon as possible after the crash. That is why your first call after an Indiana truck accident should be to Keller & Keller.