These are the type of photos you need to take at the scene of a car accident

While motorists are advised against using a mobile phone when driving, it is a valuable resource when it comes to taking photos at the scene of an accident. It is important to take specific photos of the accident scene, including damage to the vehicles involved, injuries, traffic signs and even skid marks on the pavement.

These photos can be used as evidence to help you support a claim against the Road Accident Fund (RAF) and can be useful for supporting claims against an insurance company.

These are the type of photos you need to take at the scene of a car accident

Arrive Alive provides a list of important photos that you should take if you are involved in an accident:

What you can use to take the photos?

You can use any device to take photos of a car accident and the surrounding scene. Just ensure the picture quality is good enough to show what you photograph clearly.

Smartphones are especially useful because they automatically store the time and date when each photo is taken – helping prove that the images are of what you say they are of. Some modern digital cameras can do this too, but you will typically have to configure their settings ahead of time so that they add date and/or time stamps.

Take photos that will support a possible claim

You should focus on getting photos of the following:
  • Physical injuries: Of course, if you or others are seriously injured, securing proper medical attention must be your main priority. If and when possible, it’s a good idea to take photos of your own injuries as a record. Don’t try to photograph other people’s injuries, especially not without their express permission.
  • Everyone who is involved in the accident: This includes police and witnesses on the scene. These images could be useful for locating witnesses or securing testimony later.
  • All vehicles involved, and vehicle damage caused by the accident: Be sure to get the license plates and photograph any damage done, to both the interior and exterior of each vehicle.
  • Road conditions: Take close-ups of any skid marks, debris or poor conditions that could have contributed to the crash.
  • Drivers’ licenses and insurance cards: Ideally, the other drivers will be willing to let you take photos of their personal information.
  • Damage to surroundings: If a traffic sign was knocked over or a boundary wall was hit, take a photo.
  • Weather conditions: If there is low visibility or it’s raining, this could have contributed to the accident and may influence the outcome of a claim.
  • Traffic lights and signs: If a stop sign was obscured from view by a tree, for example, it could be valuable to have that on record.
Take photos from different distances

If you have limited storage space on the device, try to get good photos of the things listed above. If space isn’t a consideration, it’s a good idea to take all photos twice, once with flash and once without.

Also, take photos from different angles and distances, combining close-ups, shots at medium distances and panoramic views. This makes it possible to show details, as well as the relative positions of objects and the spaces between them.

Don’t post your photos on social media

While it may be tempting to post photos you take on social media, it’s better to avoid sharing car accident photos. These photos and other comments related to your car accident could be used as evidence and might negatively influence the outcome of a claim you have.

Source: Arrive Alive