You can get information about a truck driver’s behavior before a crash in many cases, but this isn’t a fact that a lot of people know about. Inside most large commercial trucks, there is an event data recorder, or EDR, that records important information like the truck’s speed or braking pattern.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an EDR can be one of many kinds of devices, so it is important to figure out if the truck that crashes into you had one and what kind it is as soon as you can. Why is that important?
- Record important information for only a few minutes at a time
- Record over past information
- Could be withheld or erased by the owner
EDRs generally belong to the trucking company or truck’s owner, and they are not legally required. As a result, there is no requirement that the company or driver has to give the EDR to the police or others involved in your case.
Instead, your attorney will need to ask the court to subpoena the EDR data with a court order.
How could EDR data help your case?
EDR data is important because it contains so much information about the moments leading up to a collision. It may have information such as:
- Pre-crash vehicle dynamics
- Data from during or after the crash
- Driver inputs
- Restraint usage or deployment status
- Post-crash data
You may be able to see information about how fast the driver was going, whether or not they used their brakes and even the kinds of maneuvers they used.
Not all EDRs are the same
Do keep in mind that not all EDRs are the same. Some will not have the same information recorded as others. So, one might have all the above information for 30 or 40 minutes, but another might have only three or four minutes of data.
After a serious truck crash, you deserve to know your legal options. With the data from an EDR, you may be able to see more about the strength of your case and gain information to use against the at-fault party as you seek compensation.