June 28, 2018
How Does an Accident Reconstruction Expert Determine Fault?
Being the victim of a car accident is a traumatic experience for anyone. The days, weeks, and months that follow are often confusing and frustrating – especially if you sustained major injuries. If questions arise and the fault is difficult to determine outright, an Accident Reconstruction Expert can be brought in to provide their own assessment of the crash.
What Is an Accident Reconstruction Expert?
Accident Reconstruction Experts are professionals with strong backgrounds in engineering, science, and law enforcement. They understand motor crash vehicles from a scientific point of view. They collect a variety of evidence and date to recreate the accident in a way that the victims can understand what happened from beginning to end, in hopes of determining the party at fault.
How Does an Accident Reconstruction Expert Recreate a Crash?
Reconstruction experts use a variety of methods to collect enough data to recreate a crash scene sequence. In addition to the methods listed below, they will consider the extent of damage to each vehicle involved, eyewitness testimony, police reports, and any images or videos of the crash.
Collecting Data from the Event Data Recorder
Most vehicles built within the last ten to fifteen years have internal devices called event data recorders (EDR). An EDR is a black box that collects important information about the series of events that led to a car accident.
EDRs may collect the forward and lateral crash force, the number of impacts, the duration of the crash event, the occupant’s size, the vehicle’s speed, the position of the front seats, any airbag deployment, the engine rpm, the steering wheel angle, brake applications, and, in case of a rollover, the vehicle’s roll angle.
Computer accident reconstruction software, or Simulation Model of Automobile Collisions (SMAC), allows the experts to create animations or 3-D models of a wreck to show what occurred and how. Programs like this often require information that can be acquired from the EDRs, as well as the specifications of the vehicles – like the dimension and weight.
This type of software can also examine the steering and braking information, as well as the surface condition of the road.
Working with the Crash Victims
The Accident Reconstruction Expert will typically want to speak to the crash victims to get a sense of their sequence of events from the crash. They may ask for access to medical records from the incident, as well.
They will then examine all the data available a determine who is at fault for the wreck. If two Accident Reconstruction Experts examine the same case and have different opinions, a jury will most likely be asked to decide who is at fault, after having been presented with information from both experts.
Unfortunately, the majority of car accidents are caused by human error. In conjunction with an Accident Reconstruction Expert, a dedicated and reliable law firm can help you seek the compensation you deserve after a traumatic wreck. If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident in Georgia, our Georgia car accident lawyers are prepared to work for you.