If you have been involved in an Augusta car crash and want to seek damages from an at-fault driver, you need evidence. This may include the police report of the crash, eyewitness statements, photos, and camera footage from the crash scene, as well as the camera footage from any nearby areas. You will typically need the help of an Augusta car accident lawyer to gather such evidence.
Particularly when it comes to obtaining footage from cameras located at or near the crash scene, you may have a hard time going at it alone. Here is a look at why such footage is important and how you can obtain it.
Importance of Camera Footage
A video is typically the most accurate piece of evidence that can show clearly how the crash occurred, at least from a given angle. If you suffered an Augusta accident, it is possible that a nearby CCTV camera captured the crash scene. If it didn’t capture the precise moment of the crash, it may have recorded the position, direction, and behavior of the vehicles involved just before or after the accident took place.
This is valuable information that can be used in reconstructing a crash and establishing liability. Unlike many other states, Georgia Department of Transportation does not record videos from traffic cams, so there’s no use seeking traffic camera footage for your Augusta accident.
When you try to seek CCTV footage from a private establishment or person, it may not always be easy. You will likely need additional help to secure the video.
Obtaining the Camera Footage
You can walk into a store or business and request them to share the camera footage related to the crash. In an overwhelming majority of the cases, though, the establishment or the owner will refuse the request. This is simply because they are not sure whether or not they should legally hand over their tapes.
The problem with trying on your own is that while your attempts fail, the CCTV footage may get erased or rewritten. This means useful evidence that could have helped your car accident claim gets lost.
Who Can Help?
The good news is that you can get help in getting the relevant CCTV footage from a shop, store, or another establishment close to the crash location. If this was a serious crash or a hit-and-run, for instance, you can wait for the police officers to arrive on the scene. Once they do, the officers will likely visit all the nearby locations and see if any footage that pertains to the crash is available. Once the police obtain this footage, you may be able to get your hands on it later.
A lawyer can likewise help you in getting the footage of your accident, even days or weeks after the crash. However, it is always advised that you contact a lawyer immediately after a crash if you want to get the footage from a business or private entity.
The legal way of obtaining the footage from a private camera is by getting a subpoena. A judge issues a subpoena after hearing your request and determining whether or not you should have the footage. The downside to this is that getting a subpoena can take some time. There is the risk that the business that holds the footage may delete or erase it in the meanwhile.
The remedy for this problem is something called a protection order. This is a legal notice that can be served to a business. Upon being served the notice, the business or private property is alerted that a subpoena is on the way, and that the business or owner must not tamper with the camera evidence in the meanwhile. The Order of Protection helps you ensure that the footage remains intact and safe until you can get your hands on it.
Why Hire an Augusta Car Accident Lawyer?
As noted above, you will need professional legal help in obtaining CCTV footage evidence related to your Augusta crash. Likewise, a lawyer can help you in soliciting statements from eyewitnesses, obtaining the police report, and bringing together other pieces of evidence that can support your claim.
Here at Ted Greve & Associates, we help Augusta crash victims through all the stages of a damages claim. From gathering evidence to filing a claim and from negotiating a fair amount to finalizing the terms of the payment, our lawyers offer legal guidance and help. Reach out to us now to discuss your Augusta crash claim with our lawyers.