ARA has the tools and experience to retrieve the data
Automobile accidents have traditionally been reconstructed utilizing physical evidence and measurements. Since the mid 1990’s an increasing percentage of vehicles has been equipped with Event Data Recorders (EDR’s). The information available on these vehicles varies widely between make, model and vintage. ARA has the tools and experience to retrieve the data stored on a large percentage of vehicles used on the roadway today. The information retrieved must be carefully scrutinized to insure the data is accurate, reliable and relevent to the matter being investigated. Once the information has been properly analyzed, it can be applied to the accident at hand and compared to conditions determined from traditional reconstruction methods as well as other evidence (witness statements, tire impressions, impact locations, etc…).
Event data recorders may record many or only a few of the items listed below:
Vehicle speed at impact
Vehicle speed for several seconds (sometimes minutes) before impact
Vehicle change in velocity from the impact
Driver and/or passenger use of seat belts
Occupant seat positions
Occupant classification (adult, small adult, car seat)
Timing of safety restraint deployments
Driver actions prior to impact (steering, braking, throttle, cruise control, gear postion, etc…)
Date/time of accident (typically only on commercial vehicles)
Yaw and/or Roll-over rate of vehicle prior to impact
Diagnostic trouble codes with the vehicle’s operational systems (brakes, engine, safety restraints, etc…)
Dozens of other vehicle parameters may be recorded in various forms depending on make, model and vintage.
Nearly all passenger vehicles have some type of EDR, however, the data from some vehicles can only be obtained through the vehicle manufacturer. ARA uses the only commercially available tool for obtaining information from those vehicles that can be downloaded without the manufacturer’s assistance. Please contact ARA for information regarding what data a specific vehicle may contain (please have make/model/year and the VIN if possible).
Commercial Motor Vehicles (CMVs) may also have EDR capability from one or more sources. Unlike passenger vehicles, CMV recorders are typically related to vehicle components (engine, GPS, brakes, transmission, etc…) and are not always related to the manufacturer of the vehicle. The most common EDR capability of CMVs is the Engine Control Module (ECM) which may record many of the items listed above for passenger vehicles. Like passenger vehicles, the data contained on CMV recorders can vary widely based upon many factors.
ARA can download some or all of the EDR’s on vehicles manufactured by: