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What’s a truck’s event data recorder?

On Behalf of | Nov 28, 2023 | Truck Accidents |

Safety technology on commercial vehicles continues to evolve, but one of the most transformative additions to modern semitrucks is the inclusion of “event data recorders” or EDRs in their operating systems.

Sometimes referred to as a truck’s “black box,” the EDR can play a pivotal role when it comes to understanding what happened leading up to a crash and during the crash itself. 

What can an EDR reveal?

EDRs generally record a significant amount of data, including things like:

  • Vehicle speed: If a truck driver exceeded the speed limit right before a crash – or was even just going too fast for the weather and road conditions – the truck’s EDR can show how that was a contributing factor to an accident.
  • Brake use: An EDR can also show when and how a driver applied the truck’s brakes, which can provide insight into the driver’s response times and, possibly, whether they were distracted right before a wreck.
  • House of use: The trucking industry has hours-of-service rules for a reason. An EDR can sometimes be used to establish that a trucker went over their limit, which may suggest that they were tired and too fatigued to be alert behind the wheel. 

When a truck accident occurs, the resulting injuries and other losses can be severe. For that reason, you can’t expect trucking companies to volunteer all the information they may have – especially when some of that information could be used to build a case for negligence. It can take experienced legal guidance to know where to look for evidence of culpability – and to know how to obtain it.