Being in a car accident in Pennsylvania can be dangerous and scary. But it can also be complicated and confusing, leaving many wondering what are the next steps to take for moving forward.
In many cases, after a car accident in Pennsylvania, it is important to obtain the traffic camera footage of your accident. But how do you gain access to traffic camera footage in Pennsylvania?
How to Prove Fault You’re Not At Fault in a Car Accident?
After being in a car accident in Pennsylvania, many are concerned with proving that they weren’t at fault for the car accident.
In order to prove that you are not at fault for the car accident, you must prove that it was the other party or parties that was at fault for the accident. Moreover, you must also have sufficient evidence to prove that it was not you at fault for the accident but the other party or parties.
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Why Is It Important to Prove Fault in a Car Accident?
First, it’s important to understand why it is important to prove fault in a car accident in Pennsylvania.
If you want to recover damages beyond the first party coverage in your own policy and avoid a deductible on your property damage, you must prove that the other driver (or sometimes in the case of a passenger, your driver) was at fault for the collision. Under Pennsylvania law, if you are more than 50% at fault, you cannot collect damages from the other driver. This means that you will want to prove that 1) the other driver was negligent and 2) you were not at fault (or at least you were not 50% at fault).
However, Pennsylvania is a modified no-fault insurance state. This means that, if you are in a car accident in Pennsylvania, then you will usually file an insurance claim with your own insurance, to try and get paid for your medical bills or wage loss. It is also often faster to first pursue auto repair or replacement bills with your own companies. You would file a claim with your own insurance company no matter who is at fault for the accident.
What Evidence Can Be Used to Prove Fault?
In order to prove fault of a car accident, there are a number of different pieces of evidence that you can furnish to build your case.
For example, to prove you were not at fault and to prove that the other party was at fault, you may provide:
- A copy of the police report
- An eyewitness testimony
- Evidence from the scene of the car accident such as photographs of the debris or vehicle damage
- Copies of your medical records
An additional important type of evidence may be traffic camera footage when it is available. Traffic camera footage shows a record of the collision, which can be used to prove fault of the car accident.
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When Might You Be Able to Access Traffic Camera Footage?
Many different types of roads and intersections have traffic cameras, which can record events on the road. This can be useful evidence in the aftermath of an accident to prove who was at fault for the accident. Traffic camera footage is particularly helpful if there were no eyewitnesses at the scene of the accident to provide testimony on what happened.
Traffic camera footage can be helpful for proving fault for many different types of accidents. It is commonly used for:
- Car accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Hit-and-run accidents
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What Are the Different Types of Cameras?
As many different types of roads and intersections are equipped with traffic cameras, there are also many different types of traffic cameras.
For example, some popular types of traffic cameras include:
- Red-light cameras: These cameras monitor everyday traffic on roads.
- Business cameras: These cameras are surveillance cameras on businesses and/or government buildings that can record accidents that take place in the parking lots or nearby roads.
- Private residence footage: These cameras are cameras on private property, such as doorbell cameras.
Where is Traffic Camera Footage Accessible in Pennsylvania?
In Pennsylvania, there are several types of traffic camera footage that are accessible to the public.
For example, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has many different feeds of data available, including traffic cameras. You can see this footage at the 511PA Camera List.
There is also red light camera footage available at PhilaPark.
However, this footage is real-time footage, which means it does not show data from past events; thus, you cannot use it to prove fault for an accident in the past.
How Can a Lawyer Help Gather Traffic Camera Footage?
Accessing camera footage in Pennsylvania can sometimes be difficult. This is where a lawyer can help.
For example, for traffic camera footage that has been captured by government cameras or private cameras, it is often necessary to send a spoliation letter and later issue a subpoena in order to gain access to this traffic camera footage.
This process can be difficult, complex, and long for many people, but a lawyer can help. A lawyer will understand the process by first sending letters to known entities controlling cameras to preserve your video and if necessary have a subpoena issued. Your attorneys have experience seeking the voluntary cooperation of camera owners in some cases.
In cases where there are severe damages and disputed facts, a private investigator may also be retained by your lawyer to obtain video evidence.
If video evidence is not promptly preserved, it may be erased or deleted in a very short period of time.
How to Get Help Gathering Traffic Camera Footage?
Have you recently suffered a car accident in Pennsylvania? If you are interested in proving fault of the car accident, it can be very helpful to your case to gain access to the traffic camera footage from your accident.
In many cases, this can be difficult to obtain on your own. However, you can be helpful by letting your lawyer know of any cameras that you are aware of or have observed in the area.
If you need help gathering traffic camera footage to prove fault for your car accident in Pennsylvania, contact Berger and Green.
Call or text 412-661-1400 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form