back to top
Seidman Margulis & Fairman, LLP Seidman Margulis & Fairman, LLP
Toll Free 888-837-3275
Chicago 312-445-9034
Decades Of Experience Behind Every Case
Toll Free
Get a Free Case Evaluation

Don’t forget about the “black box” after a truck accident

After any kind of traffic accident, it is important to gather as much evidence as you can at the scene of the collision before cleanup crews arrive and clear away the wreckage. The evidence present before the cleanup crews arrive is often crucial to building an effective personal injury claim. Once the evidence is gone, it is very difficult or even impossible to recover.

While this is true in all traffic accidents, the stakes are usually much higher when it comes to accidents involving large commercial trucks. These enormous vehicles often cause immense damage and leave victims with serious injuries that require extensive emergency medical care and may involve months or years of treatment to reach recovery — or for the victim to learn to live with a permanent disability brought on by the accident.

Obtaining fair compensation for your injuries and material losses requires building and filing a strong claim. This is where things begin to grow complicated. On one hand, it is unwise to file a poorly supported claim without strong evidence, so you may need to take some time to gather evidence and assemble a convincing narrative of how the accident occurred. On the other hand, if you wait to begin gathering evidence and building your claim, the evidence you need may not stick around.

Trucks contain accident-proof "black boxes," too

Since the 1990s, manufacturers have included electronic control modules, or ECMs, in the production of commercial trucks. These ECMs collect specific kinds of data about the operation of the vehicle and include protective features so that they can withstand high-speed collisions. These devices are similar to "black boxes" that we hear about on the news whenever a plane crashes.

These devices record data and store it safely for a set period of time, typically about 30 days. However, the owner of the vehicle (which may or may not be the driver) retains the legal right to destroy this data unless some other party makes a formal request for it using the proper legal process. This means you must act quickly to recover this important evidence before the owner has the time to destroy it forever.

The data collected may include average speeds and highest speeds driven, average RPMs, hours spent idling, and hours spent driving over 65 miles per hour, as well safety feature usage, like seat belts and air bags.

Build a strong claim quickly

This data often proves invaluable to building a strong claim, and should be a top priority when gathering evidence. Make sure to begin building your claim as soon as you can to preserve your rights and provide the tools you need for the hard work of recovery.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information


Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Email Us For A Response
Seidman Margulis & Fairman, LLP

Chicago Office
20 South Clark Street
Two First National Plaza
Suite 700
Chicago, IL 60603

Toll Free: 888-837-3275
Local: 312-781-1977
Fax: 312-853-2187 Chicago Law Office Map

Chicago Heights Office
(By appointment only)
12 West 15th Street
Chicago Heights, IL 60411

Local: 888-837-3275
Fax: 708-756-2838 Chicago Heights Office Map

Belleville Office
110 West Main Street
Suite 110
Belleville, IL 62220

Local: 618-623-4602
Fax: 224-603-8345 Belleville Office Map

Deerfield Office
500 Lake Cook Rd
Suite 350
Deerfield, IL 60015

Local: 847-580-4223
Fax: 847-637-5795 Deerfield Law Office Map

Sunset Hills Office
10805 Sunset Office Drive
Suite 300
Sunset Hills, MO 63127

Local: 314-238-1342

Sunset Hills Law Office Map