Should You Install a Car Dash Cam for Your Protection?

A highway in the evening streaming away from an unseen driver with an illuminated dashboard and rearview mirror framing it.

Should You Install a Car Dash Cam for Your Protection?

Rising Awareness of Dashboard Cameras

Most video evidence involving road-related incidents comes from dash cams. Dash cams can sit on a car dashboard, affix to the windshield, or clip to the rear view mirror with the camera facing forward. Most of us have seen dash cam footage on the news from law enforcement vehicles. Such cameras often back up officer accounts of traffic incidents or even of crimes. Regardless of what the cameras record, the results allow those who need to know what actually occurred assess the facts with greater accuracy.

Dash Camera Evidence is Convincing

Video provides some of the best evidence to prove fault available today. Video footage surpasses verbal accounts with its much greater accuracy. Viewing a car collision on a visual recording removes many of the doubts that crop up during testimony. Consumer Reports relates that both insurance companies and drivers welcome such footage. Did the car run a red light? Did the driver rear end the car ahead or did the other driver back up? Who crossed into whose lane? Say what they will, driver statements fall flat when judges, juries, or authorities see otherwise in video evidence.

Who uses Dash Cams?

Currently, the greatest use in the United States of dash cameras is by law enforcement. However, many consumers have turned to the technology as a form of protection. An additional bonus that comes with some cameras is that they automatically record when the car is shaken, making them ideal for use against theft and vandalism. Cameras provide solid evidence to back your statements and prove your case. The footage from dash cams can help to dismiss fraudulent lawsuits or lawsuits brought on by those who misinterpreted events.

International Dash Camera Use

According to Wired, almost everyone in Russia uses dash cams. Russian drivers face strict repercussions when involved in an automobile accident. Authorities there do not accept verbal accounts as valid. That has led Russian drivers to install cameras for self protection. The video footage captured by the Russian people is extensive and much of it is eye-popping. YouTube features a great deal of the captured footage. Before you search for these videos, however, be sure you have a fair amount free time.

Privacy Laws and Dash Cameras

Most often, dash cams do not view the interior of the car, leaving the driver with relative privacy. Audio, however, can record voices and sounds inside the car. When considering a dash cam, it’s wise to know the laws regarding audio recordings in the state where you live. Audio recordings come with a host of laws regarding their use. When in doubt, turn the microphone off.

Will Dash Cameras Become Standard?

Will cars of the future come equipped with such cameras? The Economist suggests they might. Manufacturers will soon add backup cameras to every car they make, indicating that front end cameras may easily follow.

Law Abiding Citizens and the Dash Cam

The greatest flaw with the dash cameras is the same as their strength. They tell the exact truth. That means if you caused an accident or are guilty of a mistake, the camera will faithfully record it. You should consider that reality before installing one. Are you following traffic laws? Do you speed regularly? Do you roll through stop signs or go too fast in school zones? If you were to have a collision with any of those misdeeds recorded on the same loop, you might have a problem.

Personal Injury Cases with Video Evidence

In a personal injury case, a dash cam can prove invaluable. If the other party claims a narrative different from the video, you may have a very good case due to the video recording. Given the difficulty of some personal injury cases, solid evidence of the event offers a fantastic asset. When you have such a recording, let your personal injury attorney know. If you believe the other party has such a recording, ask your lawyer to obtain it.

Should You Use a Dash Cam for Your Protection?

With the growing track record of success from dash cam use, you might want to consider installing one. A dashboard camera might also deliver the added incentive you need to drive more safely. Better yet, it might curb the enthusiasm with which your children drive your cars! A future may be in store for us when all cars have such cameras. Until then, it is up to you whether you wish to record evidence of your daily driving habits.


Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash

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