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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    Senate Passes Mandatory Black Boxes In Vehicles By 2015, House Expected To Follow

    William Maley

    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com

    May 15, 2012

    Its been working its way through the halls of congress, but according to Car and Driver, the "black box" mandate for cars could be in the books. The Senate has already voted to adopt a transportation bill that has a provision mandating event data recorders to be equipped into new vehicles starting in 2015. The House of Representatives is considering a version with slightly different language.

    The current state of the bills are "vague". In the Senate version, the bill states that devices must “capture and store data related to motor vehicle safety” and release this information to an “interoperable data access port.” Changes are expected if this does go into law.

    Of course, when you bring up government regulations and "black boxes", the tin foil hats come out. Currently in the Senate version, there's a provision that the data contained in the little electronic box is actually owned by the owner of the vehicle. If the law wants access to the data, they will likely have to get a court order. But there is a caveat: first responders such as paramedics would also have access to the data, without a court order, if it would help them in an emergency.

    Source: Car & Driver, GovTrack.us (To see the Senate version of the bill)

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    This calls for Revolution, Death to these Morons who want to create a Cast system and control what you can and cannot do. One more reason to hold onto older vehicles. I REFUSE to have the GOV see what I do in my vehicle. This is NOT about Safety, but about Controll.

    I wish the worst to all the morons who voted to support this bill.

    This will build an underground network of people who will find ways to disable or remove them from vehicles.

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    Tinfoil hat time for the conspiracy theorists.

    Why so?

    The paranoid, anti-government types jump on things like this and always assume the worst...

    I suppose you'd be fine with a spy cam in your bathroom too, huh?

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    Tinfoil hat time for the conspiracy theorists.

    Why so?

    The paranoid, anti-government types jump on things like this and always assume the worst...

    I suppose you'd be fine with a spy cam in your bathroom too, huh?

    No correlation there. Black boxes in cars are similar to black boxes in airplanes.

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    No they are not!

    Airliners are public transportation, automobiles are private.

    I can't believe that you'd actually support this travesty, Cubitar.

    I don't really have an opinion one way or the other on this. Automobiles may be private, but they are driven on public roads for which you need a registration, license plate, driver's license, etc for. I would not consider aircraft to be public...they are privately owned (by people or corporations) but their travel is regulated.

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    Corporations are also known as "Publically owned"

    So yes, there is a difference.

    I have a hard time understanding how anyone who loves the freedom that the automobile represents could avoid being deeply offended by this new regulation.

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    Reality is complex. I can see how event data recorders would be useful in accidents. But they could also be used for automatic ticket generation for speeding, reckless driving, etc. And some sort of event data recorder will be necessary for Google's self-driving cars. I can see how divorce lawyers, parole officers, etc would look like to get their hands on such data also.

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    And the 'tin hats' were murmuring when the whole red light camera thing was pitched as purely safety oriented, too.

    Since then we've learned that municipalities allowed private companies to rule technicalities at the red light camera intersections irregardless of accepted safety protocols, merely to maximize revenue.

    Camino- you're dead right: this is another chip off the personal freedom block. :nono:

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    How is this not privacy intrusion? And right of freedom intrusion?

    "I want blackbox mandatory, but not for spying purposes, I promise I will not look into your driving habits."

    Signed - Government of United States

    Progressive uses these blackboxes in name of 5% savings, yeah right they do not monitor. The term blackbox used in the law is so vague and open that anything can be put in this device other than accelerometers and pressure gages to understand impact physics.

    Reality is simple, people make it complex to make themselves feel self-important.

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    No they are not!

    Airliners are public transportation, automobiles are private.

    I can't believe that you'd actually support this travesty, Cubitar.

    I don't really have an opinion one way or the other on this. Automobiles may be private, but they are driven on public roads for which you need a registration, license plate, driver's license, etc for. I would not consider aircraft to be public...they are privately owned (by people or corporations) but their travel is regulated.

    Aircrafts may be privately owned but the single difference is that the owner company is in a business to throughfare of passengers using that equipment for business purposes. Hence there is a necessity to understand what may have gone wrong in the accident to ascertain whether it was or not company's fault. Do Individuals have to go through the same too? Do you use your Grand Cherokee for taking people from Mesa to Phoenix and take $50 for the trip?

    Another government arm can easily be created just like TSA to monitor these blackboxes. Last time I saw believers of both sides on this forum were against TSA.

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    And the 'tin hats' were murmuring when the whole red light camera thing was pitched as purely safety oriented, too.

    Since then we've learned that municipalities allowed private companies to rule technicalities at the red light camera intersections irregardless of accepted safety protocols, merely to maximize revenue.

    Camino- you're dead right: this is another chip off the personal freedom block. :nono:

    This is exactly why I posted what I did. Another Freedom taken away. Wonder how long before they come up with laws that outlaw driving older auto's just so they can track you.

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    Lots of paranoia flying around in this thread.

    How can you call this Paranoia. A box that records your everything that ges on in the car and then a crazy bitch or buch who gets a lawyer and then uses this to try and make a point or insurance companies who say drive our way or we charge you ten times the rate or refuse to insure you, etc. The list is long but this is not paranoia especially when both gov and companies have always proved to use things to increase their profits or call it public safety but in reality all about control.

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    It is not obvious to others.

    Does it specifically say what technology in what magnitude will be used? No

    Does it say how will it effect in reducing the accidents? No

    Does it say other data wll be NOT collected in this effort? No

    There are many others to add. When other side is bringing valid arguments and when you make points like, "Reality is complex," "Paranoia Flying" it is obvious what is missing.

    May be similar to tin foil hats, people need lubed condoms to just take what government shoves in.

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    Take a chill pill people - just unplug the darn thing

    Guaranteed that that will not be an option.

    And Cubitar, it isn't paranoia when past practices clearly indicate a real threat.

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    snapback.pngyougojay, on , said:

    Take a chill pill people - just unplug the darn thing

    Guaranteed that that will not be an option.

    Cut the friggin' wires! Yank it out! You guys are always modifying BRAND NEW Cars, just get rid of the thing!!

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    Just wait until they legislate real-time telemetry and automatic enforcement into this!

    This kind of crap needs to be squashed.

    The technology is out now, and there is no going back. It's too late, we're all being watched, counted...make it easy on yourself, just UNPLUG it...!

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    Just wait until they legislate real-time telemetry and automatic enforcement into this!

    This kind of crap needs to be squashed.

    The technology is out now, and there is no going back. It's too late, we're all being watched, counted...make it easy on yourself, just UNPLUG it...!

    That's no solution at all, preventing the regulation in the first place is.

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    ^ Yea- guaranteed that if it's a federal mandate, defeating it will be a federal offense.

    Odometer fraud/ title fraud/ grand theft are all 3 minimal 3rd degree felony charges in FL, for example.

    They just pile on & pile on the charges and drown you.

    The slimebags in DC pedal it as 'helping you' and shove it thru, along with the penalties & charges, likewise to 'help you'.

    I need to find a clean '64 Cat coupe like NOW and squirrel it away for the ever-creeping Freedom Pinch.

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    ok i think this is harmless. and you have to understand i am against things like SOPA and what ever the new one is called. but what you guys are talking about is down right unconstitutional. without any type of warning. (not a warning given to us but a warning given to them. like something unlawful being discussed in a car or whatnot.) they cant do anything. even the patriot act needed something to start the surveillance. things like searching bomb, bus, and things like that. to actually start the tapping. what this will do is if you are pulled over for speeding and you take it to court they will refer to the black box. i DONT think that this will record audio within the car maybe outgoing calls made with the built in phones the cars have now but even then they would need a probable cause. its too small of a unit to record the massive amounts of data that audio would take up. well if you wanted quality audio that you could understand. most likely it will be information such as speed, tire pressure, different ratios. idk but things that the cops (NOT THE GOVERNMENT) can use to solve crimes.

    dont believe me that its too small? this is the size of the unit. the hard drives that are that big can only hold a couple of gigs of audio. if you want car info in with that its just too small.

    http://www.blogcdn.c...ack-box-opt.jpg

    Edited by fullmoon97
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    snapback.pngyougojay, on , said:

    Take a chill pill people - just unplug the darn thing

    Guaranteed that that will not be an option.

    Cut the friggin' wires! Yank it out! You guys are always modifying BRAND NEW Cars, just get rid of the thing!!

    It would probably void the warranty.

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    ok i think this is harmless. and you have to understand i am against things like SOPA and what ever the new one is called. but what you guys are talking about is down right unconstitutional. without any type of warning. (not a warning given to us but a warning given to them. like something unlawful being discussed in a car or whatnot.) they cant do anything. even the patriot act needed something to start the surveillance. things like searching bomb, bus, and things like that. to actually start the tapping. what this will do is if you are pulled over for speeding and you take it to court they will refer to the black box. i DONT think that this will record audio within the car maybe outgoing calls made with the built in phones the cars have now but even then they would need a probable cause. its too small of a unit to record the massive amounts of data that audio would take up. well if you wanted quality audio that you could understand. most likely it will be information such as speed, tire pressure, different ratios. idk but things that the cops (NOT THE GOVERNMENT) can use to solve crimes.

    dont believe me that its too small? this is the size of the unit. the hard drives that are that big can only hold a couple of gigs of audio. if you want car info in with that its just too small.

    http://www.blogcdn.c...ack-box-opt.jpg

    First of even 2 gigs is enough for a lot of data points from a data acquisition system. A micro SD card can hold 16 GB of data, enough to be put in that blackbox. We had collected 2 years of data on a 1 gig drive for 16 sensors providing binary information. No one is talking about recording audio. That disk space is enough for speed, mileage, location if GPS capable, etc readings. As much as I hate conspiracy theories, this act proves another intrusive method like SOPA to curb people. On Star was used without any consent or Patriot Act for surveillance of GM vehicles, so a gray and vague law like this is enough of a fuel to demand more of such surveillance.

    Lawmakers talk about safety, but the greatest need to improve safety on road is education. Engineering solutions are last bastions. But then again educating people will be against profits for insurance industry, GPS makers and data loggers. Insurance providers give radar detector to cops, but how serious are they to improve driver's education and pump money into that system? Yeah we know the answer. If lawmakers guarantee that these devices will 100% guarantee no accidents, then intrusive methods for safety of citizens will be must. But till then preventing accidents should be a priority than "learning" from accidents.

    I think the Congress possibly senses Arab Spring like event to be happening in this country given Tea Party movement and Occupy Wall Street, and it is trying to be proactive; the low Congress' approval rating and amount of distrust in the country's legal system will be matter of time for such an event, chaos in world's premier democracy and free country will be oxymoronic.

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    the idea that this will be used for anything other then crash data, operational data, and law enforcement ( again given you are actually caught speeding) is silly and with the storm going on here it sounds like you guys think it wants to probe you. those 3 points i have no problem with. i don't see many ways this could be abused. i mean really its not like it will store months of data. so there really isnt much that can be used against you. especially if the info is kept on the unit. this is more of a "if a tree falls in a forest" kind of deal. i don't think this box is pushing any constitutional limits.

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    The idea of On Star being used without any law for purposes other than crash, operational and law enforcement data was unheard of, yet it was used. Tell me where in the law specifically it says blackboxes will be used for only those three purposes and those three purposes only?

    While the law may not directly used against the people, other laws such as Patriotic Act can easily be used in conjunction of this one to do the rest. Moreover, your term law enforcement is vague, it can mean anything. Collecting data for "potential" terror threats is also law enforcement.

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    I can imagine the Patriot Act allowing the NSA or Homeland Security to store this data in the vast new Utah data warehouse under construction to mine for potential terror threats, as they plan to do w/ all email traffic, Facebook posts, Twitter posts, etc. I can also such data being useful to law enforcement for ticketing, precrime data gathering, etc.

    Will such data it be used this way? Only time will tell. Life in the electronic age..

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    but what would the government want with you car data other then to catch you speeding and solve crimes? useing car info to entrap people is STUPID. sure GPS data but most new cars already HAVE THAT! how do you think NAV systems know where you are? there would be no point to tracking what goes on with the car. now if this bill was paired with some sort of "green driving" bill then yea id say screw that. we drive how we want. but having that information available does not mean it will get misused. again especially if the info is ON THE CAR. onstart is different because the car is always connected to some sort of receiver the only thing in this would be a device for recording the car data and possibly GPS but again most cars already have that.

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    As far as data gathering, it's all part of the 'Surveillance Society' world we are evolving into...in many areas, the US is behind countries like the UK, and is working to catch up.

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    As far as data gathering, it's all part of the 'Surveillance Society' world we are evolving into...in many areas, the US is behind countries like the UK, and is working to catch up.

    But we are supposed to be leaders NOT followers, we are the land of free and blessed. Just ask anyone in Congress and Senate, they deeply believe that and want us to believe the same.

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    As far as data gathering, it's all part of the 'Surveillance Society' world we are evolving into...in many areas, the US is behind countries like the UK, and is working to catch up.

    Something that is overdue for rejection. A "surveillance society" is anathema to a free society.

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    If this happens I will never purchase a new car, which is fine by me because I enjoy old cars and always have. The problem for me is something someone else mentioned earlier in this thread, which is if eventually driving older cars becomes illegal. With the way things are going I wouldn't be all that surprised if banning any and all vehicles prior to the release of these black boxes becomes a reality in the near future. There is always going to be car accidents, drunk drivers, falling asleep at the wheel and everything in between, I see no benefit to this proposal. People joke that I'm a "glass is always half empty" kind of guy, and I suppose that is true. But in a case like this I think there's no denying it, this is not in the best interest of American citizens. Driving is a freedom born out of man creating the technology to build cars, now technology is being created to monitor that very freedom. We all have to pass a test in order to drive, we all know the rules of the road, it is our responsibility to follow those rules and drive safely. There are laws in place which have served well for many years to punish those who do not abide by the law, I see no need to basically make everyone on the road start o second guess their actions because of what the government might be looking at. It will create a distraction to people wondering if and when someone is monitoring them and where they are and what they're doing. That kind of monitoring is basically throwing the freedom upon which this country is built on right out the window, and anyone who doesn't see that is not seeing the bigger picture.

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    Precisely.

    All such legislation that smacks of control and monitoring is the creeping doom of any republic.

    Big Brother has a heavy hand, and we ignore it at our peril.

    Edited by Camino LS6
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