Like commercial airplanes, semi-trucks have black boxes

Serious accidents involving large trucks are not exactly rare in the U.S. In fact, in 2018, there were roughly 112,000 injury-causing large truck accidents. This means, on average, someone sustained an injury in a truck accident approximately every five minutes in 2018.

If you suffer a catastrophic injury in a collision with a tractor-trailer, you are likely to have steep medical bills. Determining what caused the crash may be the first step in pursuing financial compensation for your damages. Fortunately, like commercial airplanes, most semi-trucks have black boxes.

Event data recorders

Event data recorders, commonly known as black boxes, collect and store data about the commercial vehicle. If you can obtain the black box, you may have access to valuable information about the following:

  • The speed of the truck at the time of the accident
  • The position of the accelerator and brake pedal
  • The state of the truck’s seatbelts and airbags
  • The truck’s maintenance history

Some event data recorders also store records of communication between the trucker, trucking company and even law enforcement officials. Consequently, if you secure the black box, you may have even more information about the driver’s mindset at the time of the collision and shortly before it.

Protection of sensitive data

You may need to act quickly to stop the trucker or trucking company from deleting or overwriting vital information. Luckily, you probably have a few formal options for doing so. If information goes missing in violation of a court order or subpoena, the trucker and trucking company may face additional consequences.

Ultimately, locating and accessing the truck’s black box after an accident may boost your chances of receiving the financial compensation you need to move forward with your life.