Event data recorders, known as EDRs, were once virtually unheard of in passenger vehicles. Nowadays, these devices are standard placements in the vast majority of newly manufactured vehicles, a fact many drivers remain unaware of.
EDRs are essentially the “black boxes” of passenger vehicles. These devices capture a wide range of pertinent data that can become particularly useful in an auto accident leading to serious personal injuries. As such, EDRs can serve as critical pieces of evidence to support a claim for compensation following a severe motor vehicle accident.
While one might think that an EDR is constantly running and collecting analytics about a vehicle, these devices are only activated during specific moments, a fact that can make them incredibly useful when assessing liability following a roadway accident. An EDR is designed to capture information immediately before, during, and following a crash.
A few situations can cause an EDR to start recording the chain of events surrounding a motor vehicle accident. For instance, if the vehicle’s speed trajectory abruptly shifts, as commonly happens in the period immediately before a crash, the EDR may activate. Another common situation that can activate a vehicle’s EDR is when the airbag deploys during the collision.
An EDR’s recording period can capture crucial data points that offer clarity when proving liability later, which is especially helpful if liability is in dispute. For example, even in a few minutes of the device recording, the EDR could capture data such as the velocity and direction at which the vehicle was traveling and when the airbag was deployed. The EDR can also collect data on whether the driver attempted to brake, whether the individuals inside of the car were wearing a seatbelt, the length of time between the various points of impact, and even the number of impacts between the vehicles involved in the collision.
While there is a wide range of potential evidence that can prove helpful when filing a car crash lawsuit for compensation, EDRs can help establish key points of concern such as the direction, speed, and point of impact, and what steps the injured driver took at each moment in time, all of which can help establish liability. The data collected from an EDR can also serve as a vital supplement to other forms of evidence like witness statements, the police report, the dashboard camera, or traffic camera footage.
Electronic data recorders can provide invaluable information in the aftermath of a severe car crash. If you are unsure whether your car has one, and you are concerned about the likelihood of retrieving it after a crash, you should still contact an attorney as soon as possible.
If necessary, a lawyer could file the paperwork to retrieve the EDR while taking the appropriate steps to ensure all evidence applicable to your prospective injury claim is preserved. If you have questions about EDRs and filing a claim for injury compensation, call now to schedule your case consultation.