Airplanes have them. Your vehicles soon will. And we’re not talking peanuts.
Event Data Records will soon be mandatory on all new vehicles, and may already be in the vehicles you own.
Automakers are asking for more time to comply with
new rules on data standards that apply to event data recorders in new
vehicles, according to CollisionWeek. The current deadline for implementation is Sept. 1, 2012, as stated by The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers submitted a recent petition requesting a one-year extension.
Apparently automakers have some unanswered
questions about specific types of data capture about air bag and
restraint deployment, plus clarification on “time zero” and “end of
event,” data formatting for accelerometers, and procedures for
multi-event crashes, CollisionWeek reported.
Typically used by insurance companies, police and accident investigators, the event data recorders only monitor information in the seconds leading up to and after it senses your airbags are about to go off; things such as:
- Engine speed
- Automobile speed
- Brake status
- Passenger’s airbag
- Seat belts (on or off)
- Warning lamps
- Ignition cycle
- Air bag timing
According to The Motoring Loans Blog,
about 70% of all new vehicles have the devices. And General Motors has
been installing these soap-sized recorders in every automobile since
Interestingly, some fleets with event data recorders, including ones that monitor driving habits, may qualify for auto insurance discounts.
Oh, and if you go looking for a black box in your
late model delivery van, many aren’t black at all. They often come in
vibrant colors for easy recovery, and it’s probably tucked away under
your seat or dashboard.
Photo copyright of mvhargan under the Creative Commons license