Black Boxes For Cars
Black box data recorders, similar to those used in aircraft, could be installed in new cars if a Europe-wide study gives them backing.
Police forces across the continent are looking at whether they could improve road safety. The European Commission will use their research to decide if the devices could help in accident investigations.
The recorders are able to record information, including speed and the rate of braking in cars, in the vital seconds before a crash. It is hoped accident investigators would be able to use the black box information to get a detailed picture of the circumstances surrounding a crash.
Some UK police forces including the Metropolitan Police in London already use the technology in their own cars. They say it has helped to reduce the number of accidents they have.
The European Commission asked senior police officers across Europe to work on the study looking at the feasibility of installing the devices all new vehicles.
If it is a success, legislation could be passed by ministers in Brussels.
- Would this type of equipment make people drive more carefully?
- Would it speed up the legal process? It would be easier to decide who was at fault.
- Is it another example of reducing personal freedom?
- Could it lead to the police being allowed to carry out random checks on your driving history? Leading to a prosecution for which there was no accident or witnesses. For example, speeding at 2am in the morning when there were no other cars on the road.
- Is this just a more advanced version of what lorry drivers have been using for years?
- If you don’t break the law, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about?