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Event Data Recorder (edr)


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Is Big Brother Watching?

Attached is an interesting article about EDR’s (Event Data Recorders) installed in all cars and SUV’s. I have heard that in Canada the insurance companies have gained access to this data and have used it against the drivers in settling accident claims.

Does any know where the EDR is located on the RX 330? I asked my dealer but he does not seem to know.

U.S. proposes standards for auto data recorders

Reuters / June 11, 2004

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. government wants to standardize information collected by automobile data recorders and make the results more widely accessible, regulators said Thursday.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration hopes its proposed regulation, introduced after seven years of study, will dramatically improve the quality of accident investigations, especially on crash severity and seat belt function, and lead to safety improvements.

"EDRs are in most new vehicles and are already providing valuable safety information for our crash investigators and researchers," said Dr. Jeffrey Runge, the safety agency administrator.

The government estimates that 30 million vehicles on U.S. roads are equipped with recorders.

"It's a recognition that the car is not dumb; it has a lot of smart information that can help us out," said Dr. Ricardo Martinez, a Runge predecessor at the traffic safety agency in the 1990s. Martinez heads an Atlanta firm that has developed an advanced EDR device.

The National Transportation Safety Board, which investigates transportation accidents, has long advocated the benefits of auto recorders. The board relies heavily on similar devices, known as "black boxes," in airline and rail accidents.

While automakers equip vehicles with the technology, what recorders monitor can vary. The proposed regulation wants, at minimum, data on airbag deployment, speed, engine performance, braking, safety belt use as well as other key mechanical parameters.

Use of event recorder information has been controversial and mainly accessible by law enforcement authorities or others -- in concert with automakers -- with technology to download and "read" the complex data.

The government wants to make the information simpler to extract and more widely available to the public and its own safety experts.

The majority of automakers have proposed that data, in most cases, only be accessible to the vehicle owner.

"Up until now, we've solely considered the (EDR) value in terms of research and things we can learn with regard to crashes to help design and develop occupant protection features," said Jim Schell, a spokesman for General Motors.

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