Smart box takes six seconds to reconstruct a crash


smart boxThe next generation of black box technology for cars will take proving a driver’s talent behind the wheel up a gear.

Instead of just tracking where a vehicle is and how the driver brakes, accelerates and corners, the new smart box will reconstruct an accident in seconds.

Within six seconds, the box outputs a three-page accident report detailing what happened in the moments leading up to the crash.

The data is sent electronically to the insurer and is available for download to the driver and police.

Insurance companies are trialling the new device in Italy, blaming a high level of fraud for the need to protect insurers and innocent drivers from false claims.

Testers and the company making the device argue the upgraded technology is needed to stop crash-for-cash fraudsters getting away with millions and pushing up premiums for all drivers.

“The accelerometer automatically produces a crash reconstruction report from data collected by the smart box,” said Andrew Smith, managing director of Cobra UK, which makes tracking devices for high-end marques like Ferrari, Maserati, Porsche and Bentley.

The aim is to eliminate false whiplash claims because the information can tell us whether the driver was to blame for the crash, and if so, how fast they were travelling and how the car was handled immediately before the impact.

The read-out helps doctors and insurance investigators understand if the force and circumstances of the accident could have led to soft tissue injuries consistent with whiplash.

“If that technology is adopted, we’re certain the box will reduce policy costs because cash for crash a big issue for insurance companies,” he said.

“The report plots the car’s movements on a map going as far back as the start of the journey and is transmitted so quickly no one gets a chance to tamper with the evidence.”

Smith is keen to adapt the technology for the UK market and sees the device as a useful tool for insurers fighting fraud.

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