GPS Devices: A New Source for Accident-Related Data

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Data collection is a critical factor in conducting any accident investigation, reconstruction and engineering analysis.  Not only should field data be collected, in this age of technology engineers and investigators should look to other sources for relevant information.  A large number of vehicles on the road today have Event Data Recorders (EDR) that record and store crash-related data.  Many vehicles also now have either built-in or portable/handheld GPS devices which track the vehicle’s movements along the operator’s routes.  GPS units should be accessed to ascertain the time-stamped position and speed data contained there-in for the most recent trips taken.  This data can prove to be invaluable in the analysis process. As with EDR data, the issue of who owns the GPS data needs to be addressed by the legal community.

DJS Associates, Inc. utilizes state-of-the-art technology in accident investigation and reconstruction.  Along with High-Definition Survey (HDS) laser scanning and Event Data Recorder retrieval technology already utilized by DJS Associates, the capabilities of various GPS devices and the ability to access the data is presently being researched and tested by DJS Associates.  For additional information, please contact James R. Schmidt, Jr., BSME at experts@forensicDJS.com or at 215-659-2010.

 

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