What Questions Should I Ask a Truck Accident Witness?
Posted on Wednesday, November 10th, 2021
Accidents involving commercial trucks can be catastrophic. The occupants of small cars often suffer more severe and debilitating injuries than truck drivers. Although you might know without any doubt that the trucker caused the crash and should be held liable for your injuries, you need evidence to support your claim.
Traffic camera footage, medical records, and other evidence can prove fault after a truck accident. However, you might not have access to the relevant documentation, or it could go missing. Discovering a traffic camera is near the crash scene is like winning the lottery, but if the camera is broken, you won’t have the evidence necessary to show what happened.
An eyewitness is one of the most helpful and compelling pieces of evidence you can use in a truck accident case. It’s not enough for you to tell your version of events indicating that the truck driver’s actions contributed to the crash. Finding people to back up your story can further prove someone else is responsible and could help you obtain the compensation you need to heal.
Aside from locating witnesses after a truck accident, you should also hire an attorney. Many people suffer severe injuries in collisions with commercial trucks. You might not have had the opportunity to get up and speak to people who saw what happened. Your attorney might be able to track down those witnesses on your behalf.
If you have the opportunity, below are the most crucial questions you should ask anyone who witnessed the truck accident.
What did you see in the moments before the accident?
You shouldn’t ask them specific questions that could influence what they recall about the crash. Ask them to explain in their own words what they remember.
Pay attention to everything they say to ensure their version aligns with yours. If they believe you caused the accident instead of the truck driver, getting their statement won’t help you.
Can you provide more detailed information?
Once the witness gives you a general description of what they believe happened, you should ask questions for more detailed information. These questions could help you fill in any blanks for a more complete picture:
- Where were you when the accident occurred?
- Was anyone with you who also saw what happened?
- What time was it when you noticed the accident?
- Where were all the vehicles located prior to the crash?
- Did you hear anything the truck driver said after the collision?
What did you do immediately after the truck accident?
Ask the witness what they remember doing in the aftermath of the crash. Maybe they called 911 or checked on the occupants of all vehicles involved. They might have taken pictures or videos of the crash site.
Asking these questions could help you discover evidence you never knew existed. If they did take pictures, you could ask them to share copies with you to use in your insurance claim. It could improve your case, especially if your injury prevented you from taking photos yourself.
What were you doing before the crash happened?
Unfortunately, some witnesses aren’t reliable. Instead of seeing the events leading up to the crash, they might only see what happened after hearing tires screeching or the vehicles colliding. If the witness says they were on their cell phone, they likely didn’t see the initial impact.
Asking this question allows you to identify if the witnesses you find were actually paying attention to everything associated with the crash. It’s best if you can find someone who saw everything from the seconds before the collision to the seconds after. However, if you end up finding multiple witnesses who only saw fragments, you could use each of their statements to put the entire puzzle together.
Can you give me your contact information?
One of the most important questions to ask a witness is whether you can have their information, so you can contact them later if necessary. Having a witness isn’t beneficial if you can’t get in touch with them when you need them.
Ask all the witnesses you find for their names and phone numbers. Verify that they would be willing to provide a statement to the police or insurance company. They should also be available to testify in court if your case goes to trial.
Injured in a Truck Accident? Call OnderLaw, LLC Today
The Missouri truck accident lawyers of OnderLaw, LLC understand the importance of obtaining witness statements for insurance claims. We have the resources and experience to locate witnesses and use the information they provide to help you recover the money you’re owed from the at-fault party.
If you were injured in a truck accident due to someone else’s negligent actions, contact OnderLaw, LLC at (314) 963-9000 today for your free consultation. We will aggressively pursue the maximum compensation possible so you can heal and move forward with your life.