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Does anyone have any thoughts about the black box GM puts in its cars? I really don't care because I don't go out and race or go 120 in mine, but I was just curious if anyone was bothered about an insurance company or police downloading data from your car if you were involved in an accident?

From what I understand, it will record things like throttle position, speed, braking, and several other kinds of data. I believe that it is located under the driver seat, probable the black plastic box a couple inches square towards the back of the seat. I know you can't really disconnect it, because it is linked to the ECM.

I guess GM has put it into vehicles for a few years. I'm not paranoid about big brother or anything, but just curious on what others had to say about it.
 

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As far as I know GM is not the only company with a Black Box. I understand that most manufacturers now have this equipment !
 

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I'm pretty sure all modern car ECUs record this information. With the advanced electronic systems that even the most basic cars have, its very simple to implement. It likely will never be used against you unless you've seriously done something wrong. I wouldn't worry about it.
 

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The 'Black Box' data could be possibly used in accident situations. :eek:
 

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SCGA1 said:
The 'Black Box' data could be possibly used in accident situations. :eek:
yes, it HAS been used in accident situations. i read where one person was convicted of wreckless homicide. she was found guilty of speeding when she hit another car, killing a passenger in the other car. the court used the 'info' from the defendants own car to convict her. i think she was going 77 in a 65 mph zone. not really sure that at those speeds, it really would have made a difference if she had been going 65, but apparently the prosecutor and jury thought so.

so, beware....your car is not like your spouse, it CAN testify against you!!! :eek:
 

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G6Action said:
yes, it HAS been used in accident situations. i read where one person was convicted of wreckless homicide. she was found guilty of speeding when she hit another car, killing a passenger in the other car. the court used the 'info' from the defendants own car to convict her. i think she was going 77 in a 65 mph zone. not really sure that at those speeds, it really would have made a difference if she had been going 65, but apparently the prosecutor and jury thought so.

so, beware....your car is not like your spouse, it CAN testify against you!!! :eek:
And this is a bad thing? If you aren't being reckless, why worry?

The data stream that is recorded is only a few moment long anyway, with the aim of capturing activity just prior to a catastrophic event, such as airbag deployment or sudden stop due to impact. No different than an eyewitness or a red-light camera at an intersection.

On the brighter side -- how long do you think it will take some enterprising individual/company to come up with a set of blinders for these things? Doesn't take long for them to reprogram ECU's, why would it take any longer to close the black box's eyes?
 

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Also, nobody will be complaining if the shoe is on the other foot, to help you (in general not specific) out if someone hits you!!
 

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Information like that is stored in the Sensing & Diagnostic Module (SDM), the new version of the DERM (Diagnostic Energy Reserve Module), and can be used in accident investigation.

Certain 1999 (and newer) model year GM vehicles have the added capability to record vehicle systems status data for a few seconds prior to an impact. Vehicle speed, engine RPM, throttle position, and brake switch on/off status are recorded for the five seconds preceding a deployment or near-deployment event. Almost all GM vehicles will add that capability over the next few years.
http://www.ntsb.gov/events/symp_rec/proceedings/authors/chidester.htm

SimplyRed said:
Also, nobody will be complaining if the shoe is on the other foot, to help you (in general not specific) out if someone hits you!!
Exactly!
 
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