Is it the end or the beginning?Tuesday, May 1st, 2012 by Roberto Saracco
Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall revise part 563 of title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, to require, beginning with model year 2015, that new passenger motor vehicles sold in the United States be equipped with an event data recorder that meets the requirements under that part.
That is the Senate Bill 1813, beginning of Section 31406, approved in March by the US Senate making mandatory to install on any new car a black box to register all car movements (and crashes…).
Its consequences can be enormous and may eventually change the way we perceive our vehicle. It is just applicable to US, of course, but we have seen how innovations there tend to spread to other parts of the world.
The US legislators understand of course the privacy implications and say, in the same section:
- (A) a court authorizes retrieval of the information in furtherance of a legal proceeding;
(B) the owner or lessee consents to the retrieval of the information for any purpose, including the purpose of diagnosing, servicing, or repairing the motor vehicle;
(C) the information is retrieved pursuant to an investigation or inspection authorized under section 1131(a) or 30166 of title 49, United States Code, and the personally identifiable information of the owner, lessee, or driver of the vehicle and the vehicle identification number is not disclosed in connection with the retrieved information; or
(D) the information is retrieved for the purpose of determining the need for, or facilitating, emergency medical response in response to a motor vehicle crash.
(1) OWNERSHIP OF DATA- Any data in an event data recorder required under part 563 of title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, regardless of when the passenger motor vehicle in which it is installed was manufactured, is the property of the owner, or in the case of a leased vehicle, the lessee of the passenger motor vehicle in which the data recorder is installed.
(2) PRIVACY- Data recorded or transmitted by such a data recorder may not be retrieved by a person other than the owner or lessee of the motor vehicle in which the recorder is installed unless–
So, in a way we might feel that the bad implications are being taken care of but a few people have started to argue that this bill is NOT a good idea.
I have to say I really have mixed feelings. I probably would rather go for a system that forces my car to avoid any accident, even if that would make it comply with all speed limits, stops and obey just pure “common sense”. And, to take it a point further, I would probably prefer a self driving car!