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What Is an ECM and Why Is it Important in Sarasota Truck Accidents?

When large commercial trucks and small passenger cars collide, the results can be serious—producing life-altering injuries. Unfortunately, motorists in the smaller vehicles tend to not only suffer the worse injuries, but they often have a disadvantage. This is because trucking companies have an arsenal of people who will arrive on the accident scene.

When trucking companies receive reports that their truck drivers have been in a crash, they typically send out investigators to the accident scene immediately, trying to give themselves the upper hand. Their investigators are trained at knowing what to look for in order to limit their liability. While they are collecting information from the crash, you should contact an attorney who can do the same for you.

An experienced Sarasota accident attorney can help you collect crucial evidence that can help establish a trucker’s negligence. Typically, this is done by accident investigation and by requesting the truck’s data from the onboard computer, called the Electronic Control Module (ECM).

What Does the ECM Do?

This technology records data such as the truck’s speed, braking, maintenance issues, and hours of operation. While this technology is helpful to truckers by allowing them to know their oil pressure, coolant levels and engine temperatures, this data can also be used against truck drivers after a Sarasota truck accident. Once this data is collected, it will be obvious if a truck driver made an error or violated Federal Motor Code Safety Regulations—helping prove truck driver negligence.

How Can ECM Data Be Collected?

Because trucking companies know the information in the truck’s computer can be used against them, they will not willingly hand this information over to the other side. This is why the victims of Sarasota trucking accidents need to contact an experienced truck accident attorney who will write a spoliation letter and get the data preserved.

The data will have to be downloaded from the truck’s hard drive in a certain amount of time. Typically, data on a truck’s ECM is available for 30 days before it is overwritten or erased. Because it is critical that you get a copy of this data before it gets destroyed, you need to contact an attorney immediately.

Call the Mallard Law Firm for help with getting this critical information to support your claim. You can reach an experienced Sarasota truck accident attorney at 888-409-3805 to schedule your free initial consultation today.


Damian Mallard, Esq.
Board Certified Sarasota Personal Injury Attorney