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After a truck accident, request electronic control module data

When commercial truck accidents occur, they can cause incredible amounts of damage and may even cost lives. Unfortunately, it is not always simple to determine what caused a truck accident, especially if there were multiple drivers involved.

One of the most useful sources of evidence after a truck accident is the truck's electronic control module, or ECM. ECMs record various kinds of information about the operations of the truck and the driving habits of the driver. When it is not clear which party caused an accident, the data collected by the ECM can help shed light on the cause and which parties have liability for the resulting damages.

If you recently experienced a truck accident, it is wise to request the data from the ECM from the owner of the vehicle as soon as possible. The law typically views this data as the property of the truck's owner (who is not always the driver), and the owner has the right to destroy their property until you make a formal request.

What kind of information does the ECM gather?

ECMs collect data like black boxes used in aircraft, which can help reconstruct the moments before the crash. The information that these devices gather includes:

  • Average and highest speed
  • Average and highest RPMs by the engine
  • Instances of hard braking
  • Seatbelt usage

These kinds of information may indicate that the driver had patterns like hard braking or dangerous speeds that may have played a part in the accident. The device also records data about the functions of the engine and other components within the truck, which can help identify any failed components that may have contributed to the accident.

Begin building a strong legal strategy today

Surviving a truck accident is a major life event, and it's one that you should take seriously, especially if you suffered physical harm or other losses. Requesting the data from the truck's ECM should be one of the first steps you take, so that the owner of the truck does not have a long amount of time to legally delete the data.

As you build your strategy, it is important to understand the rights that you have and the tools to protect those rights. Make sure to use high-quality legal resources and guidance to keep your rights secure while you fight for a just outcome to your truck accident experience.

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