Dash cams (digital cameras fitted to the dashboard of a car or heavy vehicle) are becoming more and more common as people seek to protect themselves against spurious claims made by other drivers or pedestrians, or to prove the liability of others. Videos of accidents and incidents are very useful in deciding fault in an accident, far more so than simply having the say-so of each person involved.
Cyclists have been wearing helmet cameras for some time now, mainly because if they are hit by a car they are often too busy picking themselves up (or may even be too injured) to take a careful note of the registration number, in instances where the driver has not stopped.
Commercial vehicles are also increasingly fitted with cameras on their dashboards to protect their drivers from wrongful accusations of impolite or aggressive driving. They are not beloved by all such commercial drivers, though, as they have been known to record evidence of rightful accusations of impolite and aggressive driving.
Now, dash cams on ordinary private vehicles are becoming more popular. So why should you, the average driver, invest in a dash cam?
• They can act as reliable proof that you were not at fault in an accident.
• In parking mode, they can record and show you exactly what happened to your car whilst you were in the shop. This can take the mystery out of, say, where that big dent in your car door came from, and provide evidence to present to the police and the other person involved to recover the cost of your repairs.
• If you are feeling particularly civic-minded and you spot any (illegal) middle lane hogs on the motorway or other dangerous road safety violations, you can provide evidence to the police of offenders.
• Dash cams are really not very expensive – they start from around £15.
• You can claim on someone else’s insurance, not your own, if you are not at fault in an accident.
• If you happen to capture anything amusing there are places that will buy your footage to use on their sites or programmes.
Dash cams can record for anything up to 50+ hours on a memory card, and work when they are plugged into your 12v socket. If those hours of recording are uneventful then the camera automatically records over old footage; if something has happened and you need to keep the footage then you simply transfer it from the memory card onto your computer.
They’re easy, inexpensive and can save you from having to claim against your own insurance, so bag a dash cam today!