Dash cams provide many drivers with safety. They have been used for a number of years in the commercial sector for fleets of vans and lorries, as well as emergency vehicles. But until recently, their expensive price rendered them inaccessible to the majority of drivers.
Popularity growth and technological advancements have resulted in price reductions and size reductions, making them affordable for the majority of us. Properly positioned, they will not obstruct visibility, and they are readily available online and in stores for as little as £30.
Dash cams rose to notoriety as a result of their use on foreign roads few years ago, and many will be familiar with the awful images filmed and shared on the internet, according to GEM.
Neil Worth, the chief executive officer of GEM, asserts that despite the fact that driving and safety regulations in the United Kingdom are among the highest in the world, accidents do occur and drivers’ accounts of what transpired are likely to vary. “Insurers adore the clear and irrefutable evidence a dash cam provides,” he says.
“If you’re a safe, conscientious driver, a dash cam helps protect your no-claims bonus, as well as protecting you from dangerous drivers, road rage incidents, ‘crash-for-cash’ scams, and even minor car park knocks,” he explains.
GEM has compiled a list of questions and answers on the installation and use of dash cams.
WHAT IS A CAR CAMERA?
Dash cams are video cameras installed on the dashboard or windshield of a vehicle. Typically powered by the vehicle’s 12v system, it continuously records the road and traffic seen through the windshield.
HOW IS THE FOOTAGE STORED?
Usually, a dash cam continually records video onto an internal memory or a removable card (such as an SD card). When the camera’s memory is full, the oldest files are automatically overwritten. Therefore, you should be able to configure it and leave it till it is required.
DO I HAVE TO INFORM OTHERS THAT I AM RECORDING WITH A DASHCAM?
No. If the car is yours and yours alone, and you are not using it for business (such as taxi work), it is allowed in the United Kingdom to record without alerting anybody else.
If you are interested, find out what the rules are in South Africa, although they should be similar.
WHERE IS THE BEST ROOM FOR IT?
Install your dashboard camera in the center of your windshield, just behind the rearview mirror. Ensure that it does not impede your forward visibility.
WHAT are the benefits of a dashboard camera?
As the number of false insurance claims rises, a dashboard camera gives crucial evidence of what actually occurred and who may be involved. Following a collision or incident on the road, a driver’s recall of events or the position and conduct of other motorists may be hazy, and a dishonest motorist may be less likely to pursue a claim if video proof is available.
CAN I SAVE ON INSURANCE?
Some insurance companies may offer a discount for the installation of a dash cam, normally 10% but sometimes as much as 25%, so it is always worthwhile to inquire. In addition, you are not need to inform your insurer that you are utilizing a dash cam, as it is not considered a vehicle modification.
MAY I SHARE MY VIDEO CONTENT WITH THE POLICE?
Yes. Using the National Dash Cam Safety Portal, you can submit your footage to any police force in England or Wales. Plans for a Police Scotland portal exist, however they are still under study.
WHAT SORT OF OFFENCES WOULD BE SUITABLE?
Dash cam submissions depicting unsafe driving, driving without due care and attention, using a mobile phone, not wearing a seat belt, disobeying a red traffic light, disobeying solid white lines, and other offenses in which the driver is manifestly not in control of the vehicle.
WOULD I HAVE TO APPEAR IN COURT?
Typically, you must submit a “statement” when you upload your footage. This requires responding to a few pre-formatted questions. According to estimates, less than two percent of those who submit dash cam film are required to appear in court. If you are not prepared to appear in court, however, you should not submit the video.
COULD THE RECORDINGS FROM MY DASHCAM BE USED AGAINST ME?
Yes. If you are involved in an accident or stopped by the authorities for committing an offense, cops may seize your dash cam or order you to provide them with its film.
Neil Worth, CEO of GEM, feels that dash cams play a significant part in making our roadways safer. “Installing a dash cam improves road safety,” he says. “Once installed, it’s reassuring to know that it can protect you in situations where otherwise it would be your word against someone else’s.
“However sometimes useful a dash cam may be, we continue to encourage everyone to drive with the original GEM ideals of care, civility, and focus. If every driver adhered to these, we would see a dramatic and continuous decrease in the number of people killed and seriously injured on our roads.”