What is a Car’s “Black Box”?
Macon Car Accident Attorneys Explain this Evidence in Car Crash Cases
Gathering evidence after a car crash in Georgia is crucial to the success of your insurance claim and/or personal injury lawsuit. One increasingly important piece of evidence is a car’s event data recorder (EDR) or “black box”. This device comes standard on most passenger vehicles manufactured in the past decade. It records and stores information about airbag deployment, speed, brakes and even seatbelt use in the moments directly preceding a crash. This information can help prove fault in car accident cases, ensuring you get the compensation you deserve.
The laws surrounding the retrieval and use of EDR information are still evolving. However, the car accident attorneys at McArthur Law Firm have experience with this kind of technology. We thoroughly investigate every case we accept, and we know how to obtain black box data from the vehicles involved. Our team has a history of success using the information from EDRs to hold the at-fault driver accountable in personal injury lawsuits as well as insurance claims.
What Information Does a Car’s Black Box Record?
A car’s black box does not record information about your driving habits, identity or location. Instead, it stores data about the vehicle’s function in the seconds before and during a crash. EDRs may differ depending on the make and model of your car, since there currently is no industry standards and regulations. However, most record data on a continuous loop, rewriting approximately 5 to 10 seconds of information until a crash. Then, the data leading up to that collision is stored for a certain period of time.
An EDR typically records data such as:
- The speed of the vehicle, as well as any changes in speed prior to the collision.
- Pedal use, including whether the driver was accelerating or braking. In both cases, data will include the time spent braking or accelerating prior to impact.
- Safety belt use. In Georgia, the at-fault driver’s insurance company usually cannot lower your settlement because you were not wearing your safety belt. However, these companies always try anyway.
- Whether or not the airbags deployed, including total time to deploy and which individual airbags went off. This information is often useful in a car accident claim against the manufacturer for airbag defects.
- Number of crashes and the time between events. This information is useful in determining liability for multi-car collisions.
How Can EDR Data Help My Case?
One of the biggest challenges of any car accident claim is proving what actually happened. Most often, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will question your version of events and may try to blame you instead. Black box data can help prove what circumstances led to the car crash. This information helps eliminate guesswork, and is a powerful tool against insurance company aggression.
EDR data can help refute false claims by the at-fault driver or insurance company and prove your case. However, black box information must be retrieved quickly after a car crash in Georgia. Most EDRs store crash data for 200 ignition cycles, which typically means only six to eight weeks after an accident. Another risk is that if a vehicle is repaired after a crash, the EDR may be replaced or lost. Therefore, the sooner you contact our car accident lawyers, the better the chances that EDR information can help your claim.
More Questions? Ask Our Georgia Car Accident Attorneys in a Free Review
Nearly all new cars include event data recorders. As a result, usually at least one vehicle involved in any given crash has black box data that can be useful for an insurance claim and/or personal injury lawsuit. The car accident attorneys at our law firm stay informed about cutting edge technology like EDRs, and keep up-to-date with the laws surrounding their use. If any car associated with your crash had a black box, our lawyers can get that information and use it to your advantage.
We fight for our clients by finding any and all evidence available, including EDR information. Contact us online or call our Macon law office today to schedule a free initial consultation.