Setting Construction Quality Control imaging standards
The images a construction quality control inspector collects is the primary line of defense against construction defect litigation. Each image collected is therefore discoverable and needs to be admissible as evidence in a court of law. If litigation standards are met in both content and clarity, we meet basic requirements for use by a defense team against construction defect claims. By contrast, if the Litigation standards are not met the image has little to no use. Below are the key things to consider when setting the standard for your construction defect litigation photography
Proportional Image worth
No image is more important than another. We can’t predict which of the images taken will be vital in the future. The best approach is to treat every image as a valuable and necessary piece of evidence that may someday save a client from paying millions in construction defect litigation allegations.
The images you take:
- may be used in some legal setting years after it was taken. The image must speak for itself since the inspector will likely not take the stand as a construction expert witness
- should be clear, in focus and properly exposed
- should show the assembly in the correct condition
- should not show incorrect assemblies or in-progress work that could be considered incorrect
When taking photos for construction documentation as a part of a construction quality control inspection:
- Use judgement when choosing a place to stand to capture the best image (position).
- Carefully frame the image, making sure that the inspected item is centered and prominently featured (composition).
- Image should not contain anything that is in an incorrect state or anything that is incomplete or in progress that could be considered incorrect.
- Image should not contain anything that would be considered offensive to the client or the future property owner. (For example, a beer can in the wall.) These images can set the tone for the overall construction.
Nothing kills the quality of an image more thoroughly than being blurry. Everything else about the image can be perfect, but if blurry the image is useless. Even a little bit of blurriness can seriously limit the usefulness since the image would likely not stand up to any zoom at all. Our guide for Construction Quality Control Photo Documentation lists the common reasons for blurry images and ways to avoid them.