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Privacy of Data from Event Data Recorders

Privacy of Data from Event Data Recorders: State Statutes

Event data recorders (EDRs), also known as "black boxes" or "sensing and diagnostic modules," capture information, such as the speed of a vehicle and the use of a safety belt, in the event of a collision to help understand how the vehicle’s systems performed. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in December 2012 proposed a  rule that would require automakers to install EDRs in all light passenger vehicles beginning September 1, 2014. Most car manufacturers currently install these devices in new vehicles. 

Fourteen states--Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington--have enacted statutes relating to event data recorders and privacy. Among other provisions, these states provide that data collected from a motor vehicle event data recorder may only be downloaded with the consent of the vehicle owner, with certain exceptions.

NCSL has been tracking event data recorder legislation since 2005. See bills from 2009-20132008, 2007, 2006 and 2005.

PLEASE NOTE: NCSL cannot provide assistance with individual cases. NCSL serves state legislators and their staff. This site provides general comparative information only and should not be construed as legal advice. 

Selected Provisions in State Statutes

As of June 23, 2014

State

Statute

Requires disclosure of event data recorders ("sensing diagnostic
modules") in vehicles

Prohibits download of data, except under stated conditions:

Other

Arkansas Ark. Code § 23-112-107
 
In a written notice at time of new vehicle purchase from dealership. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s written consent; 2) court order; 3) emergency investigation; 4) emergency medical care; 5) medical and vehicle safety research; or 6) to diagnose, service, or repair the vehicle; 7) probable cause of an offense. Permission cannot be a condition of payment/ settlement of an insurance claim, or of a lease or insurance agreement.
California Calif. Veh. Code § 9951 In the owner’s manual of new cars. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle.  
Colorado CRS § 12-6-401, -402, -403 In or along with the owner’s manual of vehicles manufactured after May 2007 and sold or leased in Colorado. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s written consent within 30 days of retrieval; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; 5) in legal discovery.  
Connecticut CGS § 14-164aa
 
No, but requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; 5) legal discovery. Data may not be destroyed or altered after a crash until after a reasonable period to allow law enforcement to obtain a warrant.
Delaware 2014 H.B. 56 w/SA 3, Chap. 219 By insurers installing EDRs in private vehicles without consent of the policyholder. 1) with policyholder's consent Applies to private  passenger vehicle insurance issued to individual policyholders.
Maine Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 29-A § 1971,
§ 1972, § 1973
In the owner’s manual of new cars sold or leased in Maine. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; or 5) for dispatch of emergency medical personnel; 6) legal discovery.  
Nevada Nev. Rev. Stat. § 484D.485
 
In owner’s manual of new vehicles sold or leased in Nevada. Dealers must disclose to purchaser. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; or 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle.  
New Hampshire N.H. Rev. Stat. § 357-G:1 In the owner’s manual of new vehicles sold or leased in New Hampshire. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; or 4) for dispatch of emergency medical personnel.  
New York NY Veh. & Traffic Code § 416-b
 
In or along with the owner’s manual of new vehicles sold or leased in New York. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; or 5) for dispatch of emergency medical personnel.  
North Dakota N.D. Cent. Code § 51-07-28
 
In the purchase contract of new vehicles sold or leased in North Dakota; applies to 2007 or later models. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) for vehicle safety research; or 4) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle. Permission cannot be a condition of an insurance agreement
Oregon Ore. Rev. Stat. §§ 105.925 to .948
 
No 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; or 4) medical or vehicle safety research; 5) for dispatch of emergency medical personnel; or 6) probable cause of an offense. Permission cannot be a condition of payment/settlement of an insurance claim, or of a lease or insurance agreement
Texas Tex. Trans. Code § 547.615
 
In the owner’s manual of new vehicles sold or leased in Texas. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; or 4) vehicle safety research.  
Utah Utah Code 41-1a-1501, -1502, -1503, -1504  In agreements with subscription services. 1) with owner’s written consent; 2) court order; 3) emergency investigation; 4) emergency medical care; 5) medical and vehicle safety research; or 6) to diagnose, service, or repair the vehicle; 7) civil discovery rules.

Provides that event data recorded on an event data recorder is private and is the personal information of the motor vehicle's owner.

Virginia Va. Code § 38.2-2212(C)(s),
§ 38.2-2213.1,
§ 46.2-1088.6,
§ 46.2-1532.2
In the owner’s manual of new vehicles sold or leased in Virginia, applies to 2008 or later models. 1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the vehicle; 4) for dispatch of emergency medical personnel; or 5) probable cause of an offense. Insurer cannot refuse to renew an insurance policy solely based in the owners refusal to share data
 
Insurer cannot adjust rates due solely on the refusal to share data.
Washington Wash. Code § 46.35.010, .020, .030, .040, .050 In writing or in the owner’s manual of new vehicles sold or leased in Washington. Also requires disclosure in agreements with subscription services.
 
1) with owner’s consent; 2) court order; 3) vehicle safety research; 4) for dispatch of emergency medical personnel. Requires vehicle manufacturers to ensure that a tool is commercially available and capable of accessing and retrieving data in an EDR.
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