Automobile “Black Box” Data

Download and Analysis of Passenger Car Airbag Module Data

It is well known that the implementation of airbags in passenger cars and trucks has saved numerous lives and dramatically reduced injuries associated with motor vehicles accidents.  What is not so commonly known is that in addition to controlling the deployment of the airbags in a crash, an airbag module often times records and stores important data related to a crash.  Depending on the specific vehicle, the airbag module can record valuable pre-crash data such as vehicle speed, brake application, throttle application and seat-belt usage among other parameters (even if the airbags were not deployed in the accident).  While the recording of such pertinent information provides another tool for accident reconstructionists, it is the interpretation and understanding of the recorded data which truly lends value to the investigation and reconstruction of an accident.  Airbag systems are not infallible, and the recorded data must be verified against other physical evidence such as skid marks, crush damage and witness marks on the seat-belt webbing.   Veritech engineers are trained and certified in the proper extraction of airbag module data and understand the importance of correlating the recorded data with the actual physical evidence associated with an event.  Furthermore, our accident reconstruction engineers have the experience, training and knowledge necessary to integrate the physical evidence with the “black box” data to reach comprehensive and reliable vehicle accident reconstruction conclusions. Airbag module pre-crash data can be obtained from select vehicles manufactured as far back as 1994.  A new Federal regulation CFR 49 part 563 mandates that every passenger car and truck  manufactured for sale in the US after September 1, 2012 (with some limited exceptions), which records pre-crash data, is required to make that data available utilizing commercially available tools and software.  However, for vehicles manufactured prior to September 1, 2012, only select manufactures have elected to make pre-crash data available for download.  To verify whether the crash data stored in your vehicle’s airbag module can be accessed, please click on the following link: Bosch CDR Vehicle Coverage List or contact us directly; we would be happy to look up your vehicle for you. Please contact one of our experienced, licensed Professional Engineers at 303-660-4395 to discuss your case and request an airbag module download.