Most everyone has a smartphone with video capabilities or a dashcam in their vehicle these days. Numerous news stories include video footage taken by someone present during an incident. These videos can help establish negligence in motor vehicle crashes and other tragedies in courtrooms across the country, including here in California.

Video footage taken by a driver on Interstate 5 in the northern part of the state will most likely play a significant role in any legal action, criminal and/or civil, that arises out of an incident involving an 18-wheeler and several other vehicles. It shows the mammoth vehicle barreling down on traffic and then plowing through it. It appears on the video that the big rig was traveling at a high rate of speed when compared to the other traffic on the roadway when the accident occurred.

One person succumbed to injuries suffered in the crash and did not leave the scene alive. Two other people suffered minor injuries. Everyone else managed to escape without injury. At last report, authorities did not believe that drugs or alcohol played a role in the incident. Even so, the driver of the truck could still face criminal charges once the investigation concludes.

The surviving family members of the person who died may use the video as evidence in a wrongful death claim along with the results of the official investigation. Videos are not as easy to dispute as eyewitness testimony, which can be problematic at best. Of course, having footage of an accident does not mean that any claim will go unchallenged or be a foregone conclusion. As is the case in claims arising out of motor vehicle crashes, the other side has the right to present evidence to mitigate or contradict the plaintiff’s allegations, so it would be wise to consult with an experienced attorney before moving forward.