After a tractor trailer accident occurs, and a regular passenger vehicle is involved, it is crucial to begin investigating as quickly as possible. As time passes, more and more evidence may get lost or forgotten, making it more difficult for the accident victim to recover compensation.
Some of the specific reasons a person should hire an attorney to begin the investigation process right after a truck accident can be found here.
Access to the Record of Duty Log after a Truck Accident
A key piece of evidence that can be accessed during an early investigation is referred to as the “record of duty.” Truck drivers and trucking companies only have to maintain the record of duty for a period of up to six months, according to information from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
The record of duty includes information that may be extremely important when it is time to make a negligence claim against the truck driver. For example, in the record of duty, you will find a log containing the driver’s route, a list of all the stops that were made during the trip and more. This information will help a person who is making a claim and prove they are due compensation.
Other things the log will outline includes:
- Whether or not the driver of the tractor trailer was speeding
- How long the driver was actively operating the truck and if they are in compliance with the regulations
- If the driver was fatigued.
The regulations state that a commercial truck driver is allowed to operate the vehicle for a maximum of 11 hours, with a total of 10 consecutive hours off duty in between trips. Investigating the truck accident promptly after it occurs will determine what happened and if the truck driver can be held responsible.
Access to the Computer Data Related to the Truck Accident
There are many big rig trucks that have electronic control modules installed inside, often referred to as the black box. It is important that the information in this black box is accessed directly after an accident occurs. If this is not done, then it may result in the black box information becoming unreliable or unavailable. Also, if the truck is used again, the data recorded on the black box may become overwritten.
To Ensure Proper Documentation of the Truck Accident Scene
A quick response team after a truck accident will make sure that all the details of the situation are properly documented. This includes photographing and videoing the scene. This type of documentation is crucial when it comes to helping an accident victim recover the compensation they are due.
If you are injured in a truck accident and believe you are due compensation, you should hire a personal injury attorney for help. More information about these legal services can be found by contacting the team of attorneys at Hilton and Somer by calling 703-560-0700.