Electronic Crash, Defect and Causation Analyses

Since about 1990, all motor vehicles are equipped with Collision Data Recorder s (CDR). These devices initially provided impact and status data, as well as deployment commands for occupant protection systems. More recently, vehicles are equipped with drive-by-wire systems with electronically-aided driver controls derived from more than 40 control modules interconnected by communication networks. A vast amount of additional data is collected and stored by these control modules. Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) identify, describe and store events, faults, limitations exceeded and corrective actions made by each control module. The functioning of a control module, access, and storage location codes are defined in its Product Definition Description (PDD) manual. Several case studies are presented to demonstrate the effects of control module algorithms, events, faults and actions. A complete case study identified a defect and proved that defect was the proximate cause of the injury and death. Surprisingly, these modules can seize control of a drive-by-wire vehicle and actually cause loss of control, resulting in a crash and injury ranging in severity from minor to fatal.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: 4p
  • Monograph Title: 23rd International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles (ESV): Research Collaboration to Benefit Safety of All Road Users

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01571147
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 13-0106
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jul 17 2015 1:37PM