Case Involving Claim of No Opportunity to Inspect Car Damages

In American Family Insurance Co. v. Village Pontiac-GMC, Inc., 223 Ill. App. 3d 624, 585 N.E.2d 1115, 166 Ill. Dec. 93 (1992), although some wires from the car were preserved, along with photographs of the car and other damaged property, the court noted that the defendant car manufacturer and car dealer "were unable to inspect, as plaintiffs' experts were, the most important evidence because of plaintiffs' actions." American Family, 223 Ill. App. 3d at 627, 585 N.E.2d at 1118. The court noted: "Plaintiffs were the only individuals with first-hand knowledge of the physical evidence which is far more probative under these circumstances in determining whether the vehicle caused the fire than photographs and two wires taken from the trunk area. Defendants had no opportunity to inspect the car and, in particular, the location and condition of the area surrounding the wires. While defendants are currently able to observe the pictures and the wires, those observations would be without the benefit of the inspection of the whole car. Defendants would be able to observe only evidence gathered by plaintiffs without reference to the object alleged to have caused the damage." American Family, 223 Ill. App. 3d at 627-28, 585 N.E.2d at 1118-19.