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Should I Take Car Accident Pictures?

By Christopher Coble, Esq. on July 05, 2016 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

If you've been in a car accident, you should do everything you can to document what happened. But that's not the whole story. There are a few things you'll want to take care of first, and many things you'll need to take care of after.

Here's what you need to know about taking pictures of your car accident:

First Things First

Before you attempt to be the Ansel Adams of car accidents, check on the other drivers and passengers. Make sure everyone involved in the accident is OK, and request medical attention for anyone who is hurt.

And if it is a serious accident, you should report the accident to local police or highway patrol. They may be needed to handle any impact on traffic, coordinate medical personnel and/or tow trucks, and they will also document the accident in their own report.

Get Snappy

One of the great things about smart phones (if you have one) is they all have cameras and, depending on their memory capacity, can allow you to take as many photos as you want. Plus, you can see right away whether the shot is good or not. So take as many photos of the car accident as you can.

Photos of the scene will be essential to your car insurance claim. Clearly you want to focus on the immediate damage to the car, but there are a few other things you may want to aim your camera at:

  • Personal injuries
  • Damage to surrounding property
  • Layout of the street or intersection
  • Nearby street signs or highway markers

Your photos may be used to prove you weren't at fault for the accident, and could ultimately determine how much you could get in a claim settlement.

What Else?

Your photos won't tell the whole story of the accident, and there's other evidence that can help during a car accident investigation. You'll also want to gather insurance and contact information for everyone involved in the accident. (Taking photos of insurance cards can help.) And you'll want to talk to anyone who witnessed the accident, record what they saw, and gather their contact information as well.

Getting into a car accident is scary. But what happens afterwards doesn't have to be. If you've been in a serious car accident, contact an experienced car accident attorney today -- he or she will be able to answer all of your questions, often for free.

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