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Black Box Data After a Truck Wreck

Black box data after a truck wreck.

Even Data on Big Rigs

Some of the most important information about a truck wreck can come from the black box or event data recorder on most of the newer model 18 – Wheelers. Getting to the critical information before it is destroyed can be an important step by your legal representatives.

Event data recorders typically show the speed of the vehicle in the important seconds prior to a truck accident and also such things as RPMs and the ever-critical brake application data.

What is a Black Box on a Semi?

Black boxes are really computer modules, also called “event data recorders” or EDRs.  An EDR will be found on most modern tractor-trailers and passenger cars on the road today. A EDR will record speed prior to and during an accident, Braking, and even evasive maneuvers or the absence of evasive actions.

How Black Box Data Helps Your Case

Truck drivers, like many other drivers, tend to recall how an accident happened in a manner most favorable to themselves. This is particularly true after they have met with their defense attorney.

Obtaining the crash data from the black box can serve to curb the truck driver’s imagination on how the accident happened at least relative to the speed and braking application of the vehicle.

Getting the data downloaded requires special equipment and expertise. Hiring an attorney for a truck accident can enable the retrieval of the necessary evidence,

Many families believe that there is no rush in obtaining legal representation after a very serious accident simply because they doubt that the truck driver or trucking company can reasonably deny responsibility for the accident. This generally is a major mistake. Getting the best 18-wheeler lawyer early is a must.

In some truck crashes, the event data recorder information may not be that critically important, and these cases usually tend to have numerous eyewitnesses, many of whom may be other motorists traveling near the big rig.

In other truck accidents, the computer data from the black box can be extremely important evidence to reconstruct the accident and properly apportion responsibility for the truck accident.

Recently, many defense interests and truck accident lawsuits have been pushing to put the truck back in service as quickly as possible after an accident, in effect preventing the victim’s family from effectively preserving the evidence and obtaining critical facts from the black box or the vehicle itself.

How Braking or Lack of Braking Impacts Your Case

If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a truck accident and speed or braking may have played a part in the accident, contact a truck accident attorney as soon as possible.

One piece of evidence that is sometimes available is the “black box” data. The black box is essentially an electronic data recorder, a computer that monitors and reports information when certain things happen.

Typically, in the event of a sudden change in velocity or impact, a black box will record some or all of the following information: brake application, RPM, truck speed, gear, and other important accident reconstruction information.

Some commercial vehicles contain data recorders, and some do not. An experienced truck wreck attorney will know which 18-wheelers have the event recorders and which do not.

It takes a trained technician to download the crash data from the black box or event recorder. Sometimes the data can be used to help the truck driver explain the circumstances of the accident. Other times the data is at odds with the truck driver’s testimony or statements to police at the scene.

Many times the data recorded affirms the objective data at the crash site. Factors such as skid marks, vehicle crush, crash debris, and points of impact serve as powerful tools to help reconstruct the wreck.

When someone is involved in a serious injury 18 or accident or if the family has lost a loved one in a tractor-trailer crash, obtaining the black box data is critical to successfully prosecuting a truck wreck lawsuit.

Victims of a truck accident or family members who have lost a loved one due to an 18-wheeler crash must understand the importance of early investigation of the crash site and the vehicles involved.

Insurance Defense Tricks

One recent trick used by defense attorneys is to push for putting the big rig back in service as soon as possible, which in some cases destroys the evidence that would come from an onboard computer or a “black box”.

While police officers at the scene may indicate that the accident was the fault of the truck driver, the officer’s findings are not binding upon the trucking company or the truck driver and in cases involving very serious injury or wrongful death, you can expect the truck driver and the trucking company to dispute the cause of the crash had their own responsibility.

For this reason, and for others, it is very important that families retain experienced and successful attorneys who have handled this type of case hundreds of times over the years. You do not want an attorney learning how to prosecute a truck accident case on your matter.

Who You Pick Matters

Who you hire really does count. For free no, obligation consultation on a serious injury or wrongful death truck accident contact the Houston truck wreck law firm for a free consultation regarding your rights and options.

Call the Truck Accident Lawyer for Help!

Call (281) 893-0760

Related Resources:

What can be Obtained in an Early Investigation of a Tractor-Trailer Accident?


Evidence That Should be Collected to Win a Truck Accident Case


Critical Evidence to Win 18 wheeler Accident Cases


What are the Steps to Take Following an 18-Wheeler Accident?


About Greg Baumgartner

Truck accident lawyer Greg Baumgartner
Greg Baumgartner is a preeminent rated personal injury lawyer based in Houston, Texas, with over three decades of experience representing severely injured clients in truck accidents. He founded Baumgartner Law Firm, in 1985, with a mission to provide excellent legal representation and personalized attention to every client.