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The attorneys of Daughtry, Woodard, Lawrence, & Starling
The attorneys of Daughtry, Woodard, Lawrence, & Starling

What can a truck’s event data recorder tell you about a crash?

On Behalf of | Jan 6, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

It is virtually impossible to drive anywhere in North Carolina without passing at least one tractor-trailer. Commercial vehicles are a welcome sight, of course, as they deliver essential items from coast to coast. Still, tractor-trailer accidents are not exactly rare in the Tar Heel State or anywhere else.

In fact, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, there were more than 107,000 injury-causing truck accidents in the U.S. in 2020 alone. If you are in one, knowing exactly why the accident happened is likely to be important.

Event data recorders

Many commercial vehicles have integrated event data recorders onboard. These EDRs, commonly called black boxes, capture and store information about the truck’s operation. Indeed, if you can access a truck’s EDR, you might learn about any of the following:

  • The truck’s speed, acceleration and braking
  • The position of the truck’s steering wheel
  • The driver’s seat belt usage

Many EDRs also contain maintenance records and correspondence between the driver and the trucking company. As you might suspect, these details can be invaluable when trying to assign fault for an accident.

Data preservation

It is important to note that truckers and trucking companies often can erase details from EDRs. This means you may need to act quickly to prevent the destruction of critical information. Luckily, your attorney likely can take steps to secure this evidence.

Ultimately, while not every tractor-trailer on the road today has an EDR, it is wise to investigate whether there was one on any truck that collides with your vehicle. Please contact our law firm for more information.