If you buy a new vehicle model there is a extremely good chance it will be installed with a black box device that will keep a log of most of your driving habits. It is estimated that 90% or more of all new vehicles have this black box pre-installed.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is considering making the installation of these black boxes mandatory in every new vehicle. This device has been installed in some models for many, many years already and the public has been none the wiser. According to this article approximately 96% of all new vehicles already have this device installed.
What is the reason, you ask?
More than likely – to help piece together the final moments before an accident – though proponents often point to the safety aspects of the black box. The box can tell your speed, braking and acceleration, all great things to know if you are researching an accident. The device includes sensors under the seats so the device can confirm how many occupants were in the vehicle at the time of the accident.
The technical term for the black box is Event Data Recorder.
Ironically the EDR was conceived and designed for consumer protection – telling the safety features in your vehicle whether to pull your seat belt tighter and whether to inflate the air bag. However, it has evolved into a way to assist in insurance investigations, lawsuits, and even criminal cases.
GM and Ford have been installing the devices in certain vehicles for at least a decade, according to one report.
The Dangers of Texting and Driving
An auto insurance organization in New Jersey completed a study and found 28% of residents there admitted to texting and driving. Another 27% said they programmed their GPS while driving.
15% of New Jersey drivers said their own texting caused them to narrowly avoid causing an accident and 20% said they know someone involved in an accident resulting from texting while driving.
Texting while driving is illegal in New Jersey.
Chrysler Defies Recall Requests
The government claims upwards of 2.7 million Jeeps are at risk of a fuel tank fire in the event of a rear end collision.
Chrysler was sent a letter by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration encouraging the company to recall Grand Cherokees from 1993 – 2004 along with Jeep Liberty models from 2002 – 2007 voluntarily.
However, Jeep’s response is to claim the vehicles are safe and a recall is not needed. It is a rare step in the motor industry. The government can go to court and force Jeep to comply. The government has 32 such incidents where rear impact crashed in the Grand Cherokee caused 44 deaths. The Liberty model was involved in five rear end crashes that took seven lives.