What’s an Electronic On-Board Recorder? | Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorney

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Back Injury

After a trial, we obtained a verdict of 3.5 million for our client that sustained low back injuries requiring two surgeries and a lifetime of pain management.

Semi-Truck Accident

Our client was involved in a commercial vehicle accident which led to spinal fusion surgery requiring a spinal cord stimulator.

Long-Term Injuries

We obtained a $2.5 million verdict for our client that suffered a fractured arm and leg, necessitating surgery, as well as spinal injuries requiring long-term pain management for spinal injuries.

Auto Accident

We obtained a verdict for our client who sustained spinal injuries in an accident that required spinal fusion surgery.

Auto Accident

We obtained a $1.95 million verdict for a client who sustained spinal injuries in an auto accident which required a lifetime of pain management and need for future surgery.

Motorcycle Crash

Our client was involved in a motorcycle crash and sustained injuries. We were able to recover $1,450,000.

Commercial Vehicle Accident

Our client was involved in a commercial vehicle accident and sustained injuries. We were able to recover $1,300,000.

Product Liability

Our client sustained injuries due to a faulty product. We were able to recover $1,000,000

Semi-Truck Accident

$1.0 Million
We recovered for our client injured in an accident resulting in shoulder and spinal injuries.

Slip & Fall Injury

$1.0 Million
We recovered for our client who was injured in a fall at an apartment complex.


A Truck’s “Black Box” & What It Does

Many people have heard of “black boxes” in airplanes, but most don’t realize that large commercial trucks also contain similar devices. Formally known as “electronic on-board recorders,” or EOBRs, these cab-mounted devices gather various information about the truck’s movements, similar to a flight data recorder (FDR), which records an airplane’s airspeed, altitude, and heading.

In a semi-truck, 18-wheeler, or other type of large commercial vehicle, EOBRs digitally record information about when the vehicle is moving, when it is stopped, and for how long it has traveled, as well as the vehicle’s speed and its various engine components. In the event of a truck accident, this information can serve as invaluable evidence in establishing what happened and how the driver did or did not react.

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What Is the Purpose of an Electric On-Board Recorder?

Before the mid-2000s, when electronic on-board recorders (EOBRs) became an industry standard, trucking companies relied on their drivers to keep manual, written logs of their driving time. This was done to ensure that truck drivers followed the safety standards set forth by federal and state hours-of-service regulations, which limit the amount of time commercial drivers may operate their vehicles and create guidelines around how often they must take breaks.

However, these written logs were subject to human error and inaccuracies. In many cases, truck drivers simply forgot to log all of their drive-time hours; in others, they were pressured by their employers’ strict schedules and delivery quotas to intentionally record those hours incorrectly.

EOBRs all but eliminated this problem. Because they digitally record information about a truck’s movements, they are far more reliable and accurate than manual hours-of-service logs.

Over time, early versions of these devices have been improved upon. Today, electronic on-board recorders have been largely replaced with “electronic logging devices,” or ELDs. As of 2015, it became mandatory for commercial vehicle drivers to log their hours-of-service with ELDs, effectively replacing EOBRs. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) required all fleets that were using paper logs to replace those logs with ELDs by the end of 2017; fleets that were using digital logs had until the end of 2019 to upgrade to ELD technology.

What Does an Electronic On-Board Recorder Track?

Electronic on-board recorders—now replaced with electronic logging devices, or ELDs—automatically record various information about the vehicle in which they are installed at regular intervals.

This information includes:

In most cases, this information is recorded when the vehicle is started, turned off, and every 60 minutes when the vehicle is moving. ELDs also record this information when the driver changes their status (e.g., from “on duty” to “off duty”) or indicates yard movements/personal use of the vehicle.

How an ELD’s Information Can Be Used in a Truck Accident Claim

During a truck accident investigation, your attorney will likely examine the truck’s electronic logging device (ELD) for information regarding how long the driver had been driving, how many miles the vehicle had traveled, whether the driver was on or off duty when the crash occurred, and more. This can all provide critical evidence to help build a clear picture of what really happened.

Often, the information gathered by an ELD is used in conjunction with other important evidence—such as the involved individuals’ accounts, eyewitness statements, expert testimony, photographs or videos of the accident scene, police accident reports, and medical reports—to build a case. At The Law Offices of Ron Sholes, P.A., we work with accident reconstructionists, economists, medical professionals, and other experts in the field, as well as cutting-edge legal technology, to reconstruct what happened and how the accident occurred. Our attorneys are tireless advocates for our clients and have a long history of success in even the toughest of personal injury cases.

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