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Gathering evidence for a truck accident lawsuit

On Behalf of | Dec 26, 2023 | Personal Injury

Truck accidents claim thousands of lives and cause tens of thousands of injuries each year. When these accidents are caused by negligent truck drivers or trucking companies, Texas victims can pursue compensation by taking legal action. Commercial vehicle operators in the United States are heavily regulated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, and the records they are required to maintain can provide the plaintiffs in truck accident lawsuits with valuable evidence.

Accident investigations

Truck accident investigations are thorough when lives are lost or injuries are serious, and certified truck inspectors are often called upon to inspect tractor-trailers that have crashed. These inspections may uncover evidence of inadequate maintenance, botched repairs, improperly loaded cargo or defective safety systems, which could all be used to establish culpability in a personal injury lawsuit. FMCSA regulations require truck drivers to undergo toxicology testing when they are involved in accents that cause death or injuries serious enough to require treatment at the scene, which could reveal that they were under the influence of drugs or alcohol when they crashed.

Hours of service regulations

FMCSA regulations also require trucking companies to install electronic monitoring devices that keep track of how long truck drivers remain behind the wheel. These electronic records could reveal that a truck driver was in violation of the agency’s hours of service regulations at the time of a commercial vehicle accident, which could be used to establish that fatigue likely played a role.

Spoliation letters

Commercial vehicle inspections, electronic hours of service data and truck driver toxicology test results may all be used to prove negligence in a personal injury lawsuit, but this can only happen if the plaintiff has access to these records. This is why truck accident victims who are considering taking legal action should send spoliation letters as soon as possible. These letters are sent by injured parties to ensure that all pertinent evidence is protected and preserved.