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Key Questions to Ask a Car Accident Witness

A witness to your automobile crash can act as an important source to prove your accident case so that you get the compensation you deserve to cover your losses due to the crash.

To effectively use witnesses, you as well as your car accident attorney in Clermont, Florida will be required to ask some specific questions to ask them. Here, Florida auto accident lawyers at Mangal, PLLC – Clermont Personal Injury Law Firm put together 20 distinct questions to ask a witness in a car crash case.

1) Can you describe in your own words how the crash happened?

This is an excellent first question as it gives the accident witness the opportunity to provide their own version of the event. This allows them to share details that you may not think of asking. Once you hear their version of the crash, you may ask more related questions to fill in the voids.

2) What made you sense that an accident happened or that it was about to happen?

It might be worth knowing what exactly caught the attention of witnesses. For instance, if they probably didn’t know there was an issue until they heard a loud noise, they might not be able to describe how the accident occurred. If they observed what happened that resulted in the accident, they might serve as an excellent witness to prove how the crash happened.

3) How do you think the accident occurred?

Another open-ended question can help you extract the maximum information possible from the witness. Before you ask them to provide details, you should ask this question as it enables the witness to provide you with an unobstructed version of the things they think are most crucial with respect to the crash.

4) Can you describe in detail how the accident happened?

It is time to dig deeper. To get more specific information that would help you understand what led to the accident, here are a few questions you may consider asking a witness:

a) What lane was each automobile in?

b) Can you portray the stretch of the road?

c) Did either automobile attempt to swerve or apply sudden brakes?

d) How fast were both vehicles just before the crash?

e) How fast did the crash happen?

f) Where did the automobiles involved move after the crash?

g) Did you find any debris/parts from the vehicles or damaged property?

5) Where were you when the accident happened?

Was the witness walking, standing, or in a moving/parked vehicle? Were they paying attention to the road or were they busy elsewhere?

6) How close were you to the crash site when the accident occurred?

No witnesses can ever be in the right position to see the accident. Knowing how close a witness was to the crash site can help you decide if you can rely on their observations. The observations of a witness just a few yards away from the accident site will be considered more credible than those of a witness 100 yards away.

7) Were you with someone when the accident happened?

Inquiring about others around the accident site will provide you with extra leads. This may allow you to compare the statements of several witnesses to see if they all have the same story or different ones to tell.

8) What did you do after the crash?

The way a witness responds to the accident could help reveal their understanding of the mishap. Did they approach any of the automobiles involved in the crash to administer first aid? Did they call 911 instantly? How a witness reacts to an accident can explain how serious they believed the crash was.

9) Were there other individuals nearby who witnessed the crash like you?

Apart from knowing about individuals who were near the crash site, it is crucial to learn about other people that the witness saw. What you would potentially learn can be used to track other crash witnesses.

10) What was the weather like at the time of the crash?

Weather conditions may help reveal how the crash might have happened. High winds, slippery roads, rain, etc. can help you understand how the crash occurred and if the witnesses had a clear view.

11) What did individuals around do soon after the crash happened?

Who came out of their cars first? What did people around do soon after the accident? The answers to such questions may serve as evidence of injuries.

12) Do you personally know any of the individuals involved in the crash?

It is important to understand if the witness is biased. You may be taken aback if you find out that the witness knows any of the individuals involved in the crash.

13) Do you have any expertise specific to accidents, vehicles, weather, etc. related to accidents?

If the witness is an engineer, a police officer, or an accident reconstructionist, his/her professional expertise will affect the statement.

14) Did you hear anything uttered by the other driver?

Did you get a chance to talk to any other witness? This helps you learn if the witness heard the other driver’s statements after the accident. Don’t let them speculate. Instead, ask them to tell what they heard verbatim.

15) Where were you going when you witnessed the crash?

This question may reveal how attentive the witness was when the crash occurred. Were they in a rush or were they agitated? Were they out for a walk, or driving home after a hectic day? Their answer

16) Were you looking elsewhere before you noticed the crash?

Was the witness on the phone? You can really trust a witness who was distracted at the time of the crash. If they were interacting with someone, using their phone, or looking in some other direction, their account of the accident might be less reliable.

17) Did you get a clear view of the crash?

It is not necessary that a witness always has a clear view of an accident. There might be other automobiles, trees, or buildings to obstruct the view. You need to confirm if the witness clearly observed the crash.

18) Is there anything else you want us to add in relation to the crash?

The witness might be willing to provide more crucial information that you might fail to ask.

19) Can you pen down your observations and sign them for us?

Asking the witness to note down what they observed provides you with a record. You can use the same to challenge them if they narrate a different story later.

20) Can you share your contact information with us?

Ask the witnesses to share their contact information and if they have contact details of other witnesses. You may be required to contact the witness again as the case progresses.

How a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

The skilled car accident attorneys in Florida at MANGAL, PLLC – Clermont Personal Injury Law Firm – have years of experience questioning accident witnesses. The answers to these questions can be used in your favor and build a strong accident case.

Your crash lawyer in Clermont, Florida will help you decide if a witness is reliable, and how to extract maximum information from a witness.

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