Building a personal injury claim after a truck accident is a complicated process that requires time and attention. In some cases, several different parties may hold liability and may have motivation to resolve the issue as quickly and cheaply as possible.
If you were recently a truck accident victim, you must begin building your claim as soon as possible. Waiting even a few days can mean missing valuable evidence that can make or break a claim.
No matter what the circumstances of your accident, the sooner you begin collecting evidence, the better. With this evidence, you can build a strong legal strategy that uses the strength of the law to pursue full, fair compensation and ensure that your rights remain secure throughout the process.
Collecting the driver’s logs
All commercial truck drivers in the United States are required to keep logs in the vehicle where they document how often and how long they stop to rest. Whenever an accident occurs involving a commercial truck, the victims can request the driver’s logs from the driver themselves. Drivers must provide these documents upon request.
Examining the driver’s log may shed some light on conditions that led to the accident, particularly if the log indicates that the driver had not rested for a significant amount of time when the accident occurred.
Truck drivers often face pressure from an employer to drive long hours and may stay on the road even when they are not safely awake and alert. This is a good place to begin as you put together your claim.
Collecting the electronic control module data
Since the mid-1990s, all commercial trucks in the United States contain an electronic control module, or ECM. ECMs record data about the operation of the truck and the performance of various components within the truck. These serve a similar purpose to the “black boxes” used to record flight data in aircraft.
The owner of this data must turn it over to a victim of a truck accident upon request. However, there are two important points that can complicate this process. First, the owner of the truck may not be the driver of the truck, if a company hired the driver alone, without their own vehicle.
Secondly, the owner of the truck owns the data within the ECM, and has the right to delete that data until they receive a written request to turn it over. If you want to secure the ECM data from your accident, you must act quickly or it may disappear forever.
Act now for your future
Recovering from a truck accident may take many months, or even more than a year. Depending on the severity of your injuries and other factors, your injuries may require significant medical care, driving up your expenses. At the same time, your injuries may impact your ability to work, placing strain on your income. By using all the legal resources that you have available, you can build a strong claim that addresses these losses fairly and keeps your rights protected while you work toward recovery and seek full justice.