Unless there are witnesses who stop and wait for the police or video cameras near where you crash, it will often be your word against the claims of the other driver when you talk to the police to establish fault for the collision.
Police officers will also look carefully at the scene of the crash, including the placement of the vehicles and any debris, to try to determine who may be at fault and what exactly led to the collision. Your mobile phone can be a very powerful tool to help protect yourself from faults and financial liability after a car crash.
You can use your phone to record the exact scene of the crash before you move your vehicles. How do you properly document a crash to preserve the necessary evidence?
Focus on the scene, not the damage
Perhaps the biggest mistake made by those attempting to capture the details of a car crash with a phone is that they focus too much on the damage to their vehicles. That will not change, unless there is a secondary collision.
Instead, what matters most is the placement of the vehicles in relation to each other and their surroundings. There will be plenty of information about the damage to the vehicles available based on repair estimates or reports from the insurance company. It is the location of the vehicles after they stop moving that can help you prove fault.
Don’t get too close
Another common mistake made by those trying to document the scene of a car wreck is that they get very close to the vehicles while taking pictures. Capturing the vehicles in relation to their surroundings is very important.
Standing back from the vehicle to show where it is on the road, how far it is from the other vehicle and what direction the vehicles face can help you prove exactly what happened during the crash or in the moments leading up to the collision.
Take video if you can
Although even still images can help show what happened before and during a collision, video is useful because every frame of footage can also be a separate photograph. You have the ability to move around and show the placement of the vehicles from multiple different angles.
You can then lift individual frames of that video to use as photographs of the crash scene later if necessary. Having too much documentation is always preferable to having inadequate records.
Making proper use of your mobile phone following a significant car crash can help you hold the other driver accountable.