Any automobile accident has the potential to cause serious injury. If you have a collision with a commercial vehicle, such as a truck, though, you likely have an increased risk of bodily harm. After all, tractor-trailers weigh as much as 80,000 pounds compared to your car’s roughly 4,000. 

If you sustain a serious injury in a collision with an 18-wheeler, you likely want to pursue reasonable compensation for your damages. Understanding what caused the crash to unfold is likely to become critical. Fortunately, like airplanes, commercial trucks have black boxes. 

Understanding the electronic control module 

Commonly known as the black box, a truck’s electronic control module stores certain data about the operation of the vehicle. If there is an event, such as a crash, the module provides invaluable details about the truck’s location, speed and overall functionality. Clearly, these details can be useful in a personal injury case, as they paint a decent picture about the moments leading up to the collision. 

Preserving important evidence 

Typically, you must prove negligence for a successful personal injury claim. That is, you must show that the trucker breached his or her duty of care. If you plan to use information contained in the electronic control module, you likely must act very quickly. After all, most modules store information for only a month or so. Even worse, trucking companies may be able to delete records from the module. Accordingly, if you have an injury, it is important to notify the truck’s owner in a formal way to ensure the preservation of critical evidence. 

Accessing module information 

Tapping into a tractor-trailer’s black box usually takes some skill. Furthermore, you may need professional assistance to analyze the information after you collect it. Therefore, you may need to contract with a specialist who understands how to get value from data inside a truck’s electronic control module. 

You may not have realized that many commercial vehicles have internal data recorders. Nonetheless, these recorders have valuable information that may help you prove your personal injury case. Working diligently to extract data from an electronic control module may be essential.