Following a truck accident, it is a common practice to recover the vehicle’s event data recorder (EDR), or “black box.” The black box is a piece of equipment that records data about a truck’s drives. Statistics on each element of every trip in a truck are stored in the black box, providing comprehensive information if a truck is involved in a collision.
What Does a Truck’s Black Box Record?
Black boxes are present in almost all large trucks that drive on the highways today. Different models of the devices collect data in different ways: Some continuously record data (and erase information periodically, for storage), while others are triggered in the event of an accident.
Regardless of the data collection method of a black box, the appliances generally record information such as:
- Rate of acceleration
- Consumption of fuel
- When the brake was used
- Engine revolutions
- If an airbag was deployed
- Whether or not the seatbelt was worn
- Length of each trip
Can a Black Box Detect an Accident?
In addition to keeping a record of a truck driver’s use of their vehicle, a black box is also able to identify the force a truck is subjected to during a drive. This feature of a black box can be very useful during a truck accident investigation. While a black box will not definitively say whether or not an accident occurred, and how the collision happened, an experienced investigator will be able to evaluate the data the machine does record.
Through analysis of this data, the factors that contributed to an accident and the truth of witness accounts can be identified. Black boxes are a crucial tool for determining liability in a collision case.