Establishing liability in a car accident case can be complicated. Not only might there be multiple parties involved, but there may be differing witness accounts concerning the factors that contributed to the crash. An accident reconstruction expert can help determine how the accident happened, who is at fault, and which party should be held liable for negligence so you can recover your damages in a personal injury action.
What Does an Accident Reconstruction Expert Do?
Accident reconstructionists serve as expert witnesses in personal injury matters. Due to their high level of technical knowledge, they are commonly brought into car crash cases to recreate accident scenarios and answer questions concerning negligence. By applying the principles of mathematics and physics, these experts work to assess the circumstances surrounding the collision. If the facts of a crash are disputed, they can reveal whether the following occurred:
- Running red lights or traffic control devices
- Lane change errors
- Loss of vehicle control due to driver negligence
- Mechanical failures
- Hazardous road conditions
- Visibility issues
An accident reconstructionist may produce written reports, computer simulations, and 3-D models to demonstrate their findings as to how the accident happened. Generally, they conduct a thorough inspection of the vehicles involved in the collision, analyze images from the crash site, and visit the scene of the accident to assess debris or tire marks. They may also review crash test reports, collision reports, a victim’s medical records, and other relevant documents.
When Do You Need an Accident Reconstruction Expert?
Not every personal injury action requires a reconstruction expert. Typically, they are only used in cases where liability is disputed or not immediately apparent — in some cases, liability is clear-cut. When establishing negligence is particularly complicated or there are no credible witnesses, the testimony of an accident reconstruction expert may tip the case in a plaintiff’s favor. Other specific circumstances that can give rise to the need for a reconstruction expert can include accidents involving fatalities, or where key pieces of evidence are missing.
A knowledgeable personal injury attorney can evaluate whether an accident reconstruction expert could benefit a specific case. It’s crucial to select an expert with the right training, education, and experience to help ensure a successful outcome. A good expert should have a solid background in engineering, physics, science, accident investigation, and law enforcement.
How Are Accident Reconstruction Experts Used at Trial?
An accident reconstruction expert is not only beneficial to proving liability in a case — they can also help to increase the value of a claim. Once the expert has gathered all the necessary evidence and formed their opinion, the reconstructionist can present their testimony at trial. They can also use demonstrative aids to show the jury how they believe the accident happened, based on their scientific analysis.
The opposing side may also bring in their own accident reconstruction expert in an attempt to refute the findings of the plaintiff’s expert. However, a diligent personal injury attorney will know how to strategize and effectively cross-examine the defendant’s expert witness by calling their credibility into question.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you were in a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to recover your damages in a personal injury action. However, car crash cases can be complex — a skilled personal injury attorney can best assess whether an accident reconstruction expert would benefit your case and maximize your compensation. The attorneys at The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. have more than three decades of experience helping those who have been injured in car accidents obtain the monetary recovery they deserve.
The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has convenient office locations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, as well as mobile locations serving Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester County, Rockland County, Nassau County, and Suffolk County. Contact us today for a consultation.