Georgia has an expansive traffic camera network that chronicles traffic throughout the state. While anyone can access this footage in real-time at the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) 511, it’s not available as evidence if you’ve suffered an injury by someone else’s negligence in a traffic accident.
There are, however, other options when it comes to obtaining the evidence you need to build your strongest claim, and an experienced Georgia car accident attorney can help you with that.
Why You Can’t Request Traffic Cam Footage as Evidence in Georgia
In a perfect world, all that footage of traffic crisscrossing Georgia is readily available to accident victims who need evidence of the other drivers’ negligence.
In reality, however, such access isn’t feasible. Georgia’s impressive network of traffic cameras is designed with the following purposes in mind:
- Allowing the state government to monitor the flow of traffic throughout the state
- Providing motorists with livestream footage of traffic conditions to make better-informed travel plans
This live footage taken by traffic cams, however, is not recorded due to the immense storage capacity that will be required and the immense expense associated with maintaining the staff necessary to keep up with footage requests.
Video Can Be Compelling Evidence in Car Accidents
If you’ve suffered an injury by another driver’s negligence, your claim will hinge on the evidence that’s available to you. While your and the other driver’s take on the matter can quickly turn into one person’s word against the other’s, outside evidence provides you with the best opportunity to support your position.
Common forms of such evidence include:
- Eyewitness testimony
- The police report
- Expert witnesses
- Accident models that recreate the event
- Photos and videos taken at the scene
Each of these can play an important role in your claim, but actual video footage of an accident happening can be especially compelling. Video is not subject to memory lapses or to the vagaries of fleeting glances – the way eyewitness testimony can be.
Further, videos are impartial in a way that you and the other driver are not. Finally, it’s difficult to argue with the sequence of events or with who did what in relation to the accident in question when it’s captured on video.
How to Obtain Footage of an Accident in Georgia
While you cannot obtain traffic camera footage from Georgia’s DOT, there are other viable options.
More and more drivers are turning to dashcams to record what happens on the road, which can be especially advantageous in the event of an accident. Georgia does not prohibit dashcams, but there are legal requirements regarding placement in your vehicle.
If you captured the accident that caused you to be injured on your own dashcam, the footage could prove especially beneficial to your claim. Even if you don’t have a dashcam in your vehicle, however, others who were involved in the accident may, and you can request traffic camera footage from them.
There is also the possibility that one of the buildings, stores, or other businesses near your accident may have captured it on their surveillance cameras. There are more of them out there than you likely realize.
Additionally, more and more homeowners are installing home security cameras, such as doorbell cameras. The footage from these has proven quite useful in claims related to residential car accidents.
Videos taken by bystanders
Sometimes accidents happen to be captured by bystanders who happen to be recording something else at the time. The streets are full of people who have phones with high-quality video capabilities, which can lead to surprisingly strong evidence in car accident claims.
Further, people on the street will pull out their phones and start recording once it’s clear that an accident is happening, and this footage – including still photographs – can also be useful.
Video in patrol cars
New patrol cars in Georgia are equipped with digital video cameras, and their footage is uploaded to cloud-based storage. The video captured by the attending officer at the scene of your accident may help strengthen your claim, and it can be received by request in the form of a link.
Georgia’s Open Records Request
Georgia has initiated its Efficient Purchase of Records Transfer System (EPORTS), which is a web-based program that allows you to search and retrieve all the following kinds of records:
- Crash reports
- Incident reports
- Dashcam videos
The more physical evidence you have in support of your claim, the better, and this resource can help.
Contact Experienced Georgia Car Accident Attorneys
The Georgia car accident lawyers at Larrison Law Firm Auto Accident and Personal Injury Attorneys dedicate their practice to building their clients’ strongest claims. This includes obtaining and carefully compiling all the relevant evidence – in whatever form it takes.
We are on your side and here to help. Don’t wait to contact us online or call us at 770-554-8100 for more information today.
Car Accident Case FAQs
What is Georgia’s statute of limitations for car accident claims?
In Georgia, you generally have two years from the date of the injury-causing car accident to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver’s insurance provider, something known as the state’s statute of limitations for car accident cases.
How do I know if I need an attorney?
Car accident claims are legally complicated, but obtaining compensation that fairly covers your physical, financial, and emotional losses can play a critical role in your ability to recover fully. As such, having the professional legal counsel of a trusted car accident attorney on your side is always in your best interest.
How much will an attorney cost?
Many car accident victims have serious concerns about whether or not they can afford professional legal counsel. Most car accident attorneys, however, work on contingency, which means they don’t get paid until their clients’ claims are successfully resolved.