The Associated Press reported today, after reviewing lawsuits and conferring with auto crash experts, that Toyota has been inconsistent in revealing what their black boxes actually record.
What Is Toyota Hiding And Why Are They Hiding It
What is known is that each Toyota vehicle has a device much like an airplane’s black box; what is a mystery is what, exactly, they record. After the Associated Press reviewed information on specific lawsuits, they realized that Toyota’s disclosures of whether the brake or accelerator pedals were depressed at the time of a crash in each case have been contradictory. The AP also found that Toyota has blocked the release of data stored in those black boxes which could explain exactly what happened in each crash.
An attorney for a lawsuit in Texas stated in court documents that Toyota may have deliberately stopped allowing its black boxes, or event data recorders (EDRs), to collect critical information. This would protect Toyota from being forced to reveal that information in court cases.
Toyota released a statement on Thursday stating that the EDR system is an experimental device. They went on to state that it is not intended for accident reconstruction because it is not reliable. The only sources that can request that data are law enforcement, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or a court order, according to the statement. It should be noted that the automaker announced earlier this week that they will provide U.S. safety regulators the tools to read the “black boxes”.
It should be noted that most other automakers allow open access to information from their EDRs. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration revealed that this week 52 more people have died in crashes linked to accelerator problems causing massive amounts of lawsuits.