What Is Being Recorded At The Scene Of Your Accident?

Posted on: 10 September 2015

At the scene of an auto accident, there is usually a lot of activity going on. Depending on whether or not you were seriously injured, you may witness some of this activity or none of it at all. In many cases, some of the activities prior to the accident, as well as during the accident, are being recorded. These recordings can be important in determining negligence, injuries, as well as liability, but you have to know where to look for the recordings to begin with.

Smile, You May Be On Camera

Depending on where your accident takes place, some, or all of your accident may be recorded on camera. No, there were no professional photographers standing by waiting to take pictures, but there may have been one or more cameras recording the event. Locating these recordings could be crucial in helping you to prove exactly how the accident happened. Here are a few places you want to look.

Red light cameras - Many major cities utilize red light cameras to take pictures of vehicles who enter an intersection after the light has turned red. Once these images are recorded, they allow law enforcement to review them and issue a citation by mail. If there is a red light camera present in the location where your accident occurred, the accident may have been recorded. 

Cell phones - This day and time, almost everyone has a camera close by. This is because they are on even the cheapest of cell phones. People are very quick to shoot pictures, or even videos, of events they see unfolding. Your accident may even be caught inadvertently in a picture or on video that is being shot of something or someone else. Ask anyone who witnessed your accident if they happened to have recorded it.

If the witness is not willing to turn over this recording to you voluntarily, the only way you would be able to obtain it is if you hire an accident attorney and they issue a subpoena to the person's cell phone carrier. Be aware that the amount of time these records are stored varies from one company to another, and they would need to be requested sooner versus later.

If your case goes to trial, your personal cell phone records may also be submitted into the record by the defense attorney. They may attempt to use your personal cell phone records to show:

  • You were on the phone and distracted at the time of the accident
  • You were sending or receiving a text at the time of the accident
  • You have sent text messages following the accident which contradict what you are testifying to
  • You have recorded pictures or videos which show your injuries are not as severe as you state they are and more

It Is Not Always What You See, But It May Be What You Say

There are many other things that are being recorded at the scene or following your accident that can have a significant impact on your case. Some of these are as follows:

Any statements that you give to police, paramedics, or first responders - Anything you say at the scene of the accident may or may not show up on a report. Always ask for copies of these reports, and review them for accuracy. The last thing that you want to come out at trial is a statement which conflicts with what you are testifying to.

These may include but are not limited to:

  • How the accident occurred
  • What you were doing at the time of the accident
  • Your injuries, pain levels, pre-existing conditions
  • Whether or not you were wearing a seatbelt
  • Whether or not you had consumed any alcoholic beverages, and much more

Statements recorded in the 911 call - Even the call you make to solicit emergency response is subject to review. Things said during this call can often be used by either side to show your pain threshold and your frame of mind. Depending on what you say during the call, it may even be used against you to help to prove your negligence or comparative or contributory fault.

If you have been injured in an auto accident due to the negligence of someone else, the first thing you want to do is to hire an accident attorney from a firm like The Lucky Law Firm PLC to help you to sort out your cases. They will understand the importance of recordings that may exist of the accident, and not only will they be able to get copies of those that are relevant, they will be able to squash or explain away those that may cause you harm.