After a car accident, you may wonder how the insurance company gets information. Can insurance companies get traffic camera footage? How do they check that footage and store it? Why do insurance companies check traffic cameras? Our Pensacola car accident attorneys at Stevenson Klotz Injury Lawyers have noticed that relying on cameras when investigating car accidents has become more prevalent after the recent changes to Florida’s personal injury law.
Can Insurance Companies Get Traffic Camera Footage?
Insurance companies can use camera footage to determine liability in a car accident claim. Traffic cameras strategically placed at various road locations capture real-time footage of events leading up to crashes. This video can also show what happened after, such as in a hit and run.
Camera footage provides an unbiased view of the events. That makes it possible for insurance companies to make a more informed decision regarding liability and compensation.
Consider that in severe accidents, it’s possible that either driver can claim they do not recall what happened. Neither driver tested positive for substances and neither vehicle had dash cams attached.
Insurance companies may request traffic camera footage in any accident case, but cases like these increase the odds of that request. Otherwise, it could become almost impossible to determine whether the living driver or the survivors of the deceased driver have a right to compensation — or if either of them does.
How Do Insurance Companies Get Camera Footage?
How can insurance companies access traffic camera footage? Insurers may request it from relevant authorities when investigating a claim. Examples of parties that may provide access include the Department of Transportation or a local municipality.
However, while insurance companies check traffic cameras when possible, not all intersections or streets have them. The more rural the area, the less likely it is for DOT or the municipality to install cameras. The angle might show only part of the picture even when these cameras exist. In such cases, insurers may seek additional sources.
Dashcam footage can come from the drivers involved and bystanders who happen to be in the vicinity. Nearby vehicles may have dashcams installed, which can provide additional perspectives on the incident. Parked cars equipped with dashcams often feature motion-detection capabilities, allowing them to automatically record footage when they detect movement.
Businesses often have surveillance cameras installed for security purposes, which can capture valuable information about a car accident. Additionally, the high-definition quality and various angles provided by these cameras contribute to a more detailed analysis of the events leading up to and during the accident.
Home security cameras
In 2021, the Guardian called the Ring Doorbell network America’s largest personal surveillance database. These doorbells often point directly toward a street and may catch footage of accidents, thefts, and other incidents. For example, a security camera could capture a driver stumbling drunkenly at 2 a.m. That footage could constitute valuable evidence if he became involved in an accident at 3 a.m.
People often record drives, their surroundings, or a moment via selfies. In these recordings, they may capture accident evidence without knowing it. For example, a teen recording a selfie in the back seat of a car could capture the make and model of a third vehicle fleeing an accident scene. However, insurance companies often have difficulty tracking down these people, and the persons might not even know they have this evidence.
How Can an Experienced Attorney Protect Your Interests in Cases With Traffic Camera Footage?
Insurance companies must pay out as few claims as possible to remain profitable. Consequently, their profitability conflicts with the goals of injured persons. How can insurance companies get traffic camera footage to help accomplish this? Some companies might skew the evidence to show only angles that incriminate an injured person while glossing over the other footage discovered.
Here’s how an experienced attorney can help in situations like these.
Conducting independent investigations
By doing their own investigations, attorneys can counter biased interpretations of the evidence presented by insurance companies. These independent investigations typically involve a multi-step process:
- Gathering Evidence: Besides requesting access to camera footage, attorneys may collect physical evidence from the accident scene, such as debris, skid marks, or damaged property.
- Speaking with Witnesses: Witnesses can provide valuable information on road conditions, drivers’ actions, and other relevant factors.
- Analyzing Evidence: This may involve reviewing video footage, photographs, and witness statements to provide a detailed and accurate account of what transpired.
Consulting with experts
Law firms often consult with experts in various fields to better understand the technical aspects of a car accident case. These experts may include accident reconstruction specialists, automotive engineers, medical professionals, and traffic safety experts. Most cases settle privately, but if they go to trial, these professionals may provide expert testimony.
Presenting the findings
After their independent investigation, an attorney will present their findings to the insurance company or court. This presentation may include a detailed account of what led up to the accident, such as supporting evidence demonstrating the other party’s liability. By presenting a thorough and well-researched case, attorneys can maximize their client’s chances of receiving fair compensation for their injuries.
If the court goes to trial, attorneys may question the opposing party’s witnesses and experts during depositions or trials. By cross-examining these individuals, attorneys can challenge their credibility, expose inconsistencies in their testimony, and ultimately strengthen their client’s case.
Can Insurance Companies Get Traffic Camera Footage To Incriminate You?
Honest insurance businesses may still exist, but many companies prioritize profits ahead of people. Insurers may do everything they can to get out of paying for damages, even if it means sacrificing their integrity.
Can insurance companies get traffic camera footage to damage your case? Yes, but you can fight such allegations. Our experienced attorneys know their strategies and can take steps to protect your interests. Contact our attorneys at Stevenson Klotz Injury Lawyers for a free consultation.