Do Cars Have Black Boxes?
When an airplane crash occurs, one of the first things that people start asking is, “What is on the black box?” A black box records data that is vital to determining the cause of a crash. Wouldn’t it be great if automobiles had the same thing? Well, most vehicles actually do have their own version of a black box.
The black box in a car is known as an event data recorder. Here, car accident lawyer Roger “Rocky” Walton explains how an event data recorder works, what type of information it contains, and how it can help our Arlington, TX, clients in proving liability for a car accident.
Does My Car Have an Event Data Recorder?
Many of our Arlington clients wonder if their vehicle has an event data recorder. If someone is driving a fairly newer vehicle, it is likely to have an event data recorder. These devices became mandatory in all new vehicles starting in 2014. However, even before the mandate was in place, several car manufacturers started installing data recording devices. So unless a vehicle is 10 years old, it probably has an event data recorder.
How Does an Event Data Recorder Work?
There are a couple of ways that an event data recorder can work.
In some vehicles, the event data recorder monitors the vehicle’s engine and wheel speed. If it detects a problem, the data recorder turns on and starts recording information about the accident.
In other vehicles, the event data recorder is constantly recording information. New information overwrites old information until an accident occurs, which triggers the event data recorder to stop recording new data.
What Type of Information Is Recorded?
As technology has become more advanced, the type of information that can be tracked by an event data recorder has evolved. Depending on the capabilities of each vehicle’s system, an event data recorder may be able to provide the following information:
- Whether the brakes were applied during a crash, and at what force
- The vehicle’s speed at the moment of impact
- The angle of the steering wheel at the time of the crash
- Whether or not seatbelts were in use at the time of the crash
- Whether or not airbags were deployed
How Can an Event Data Recorder Help (or Harm) My Case?
An event data recorder can be an invaluable piece of evidence in a car accident lawsuit. The information on an event data recorder cannot be altered or tampered with, so it serves as a completely reliable source of evidence.
An event data recorder is especially beneficial when there are no witnesses to an accident. The device provides facts that allow investigators to recreate the events of a crash without relying on the he-said/she-said type of information that is usually available after an accident.
Given the accuracy of the information contained on an event data recorder, the only way the device can really hurt a car accident claim is if the driver is lying about what happened during the crash.
Contact Our Law Firm
If you have been injured in a car accident, attorney Roger “Rocky” Walton can gather evidence, which may include information from an event data recorder, to prove accident liability so that you can be rewarded for collision damages. To learn more about filing a car accident claim, send us a message online or call our Arlington law firm at (817) 429-4299.