When large trucks collide with passenger vehicles, ordinary drivers have an increased risk of serious injury or death. In fact, of the 4,136 individuals who died in large truck crashes in 2018, 67% were occupants of passenger vehicles. Only 18% of truck drivers lost their lives in these accidents. 

If you sustain a life-altering injury in a collision with a semi-truck, you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries and property damage from the driver who caused the accident. To boost your odds of recovering financial damages, though, you need as much information as possible about the crash. The truck’s black box may be invaluable. 

Driver responsibility 

Commercial drivers undergo extensive training on how to safely operate their vehicles. They also must comply with a variety of regulations. These include both work restrictions and mandated rests. Additionally, every truck driver has an obligation to keep his or her vehicle in good working order. If the driver skirts any of these responsibilities, your health may be in danger. When gathering documentation about the accident, you may need logbooks, inspection records and maintenance histories. The truck’s black box, though, is apt to help you fill in the gaps. 

The black box 

Known as an electronic control module or event data recorder, a truck’s black box contains information about the vehicle’s operations. Accordingly, if you can gain access to information in the black box, you may be able to tell a great deal about how the accident unfolded. Among other things, the black box maintains data about the following: 

  • Speed 
  • Location 
  • Driving hours 
  • Braking 
  • Seat-belt usage
  • Airbag deployment 
  • Vehicle maintenance 

Clearly, the information in a truck’s black box may be invaluable in proving your personal injury claim. The data is not indestructible, however. It also may not last forever. As such, if you want to access critical information, you likely need to act quickly.