By RAM Tracking on 30 May 2018
The short answer, but perhaps the most compelling reason to invest in a dash cam, is the cost saving that such technology could have on an insurance policy. Even if a dash cam looks like a substantial investment at first (especially if the cost must be duplicated multiple times to cover an entire fleet of cars), the savings in insurance could cover that expense in no time at all.
The main reason for this is, of course, evidence. Anybody that has been involved in a vehicular accident will need to experience the awkward moment where they ascertain who was at fault for the collision (assuming another driver was involved) – followed by a potential tussle between insurance companies, with the particulars of the accident potentially boiling down to, "he said, she said".
With a dash cam in place, drivers have a witness on hand 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. A case can then be made to an insurer that the claimant in question could do nothing to avoid the impact of a collision with another driver, and thus cannot take any of the responsibility - especially if the camera also uses an SD card, which can be removed and allows the footage to viewed by anybody. It's wise to have a 3G-enabled dash cam that can also project the video elsewhere, though; remember that small SD cards can be 'lost' in mysterious circumstances.
Proof of innocence will mean that the fabled No Claims Bonus remains in place, which will help drive the cost down on renewals of the policy in the future. In the event of providing this evidence, the driver in question will also be able to reclaim the excess payment attached to their policy. What's more, many insurers will also offer a reduction in the price of a policy to any driver that has a dash cam in place – sometimes as much as 20%.
This is due to the companies in question acting on the assumption that anybody that takes the time to install a dash cam is more likely to be a conscientious driver, and more likely to act with the appropriate caution while on the road. Suddenly that initial outlay of £100 for a high quality and reliable camera doesn't seem quite so prohibitive, does it?
Naturally, there's a flipside to this - using a dash cam as evidence of your innocence as a driver could also, inadvertently, expose wrongdoing. A driver that uses dash cam footage of themselves on the motorway and being crashed into by another vehicle that is attempting to overtake or undertake at an inopportune moment will not garner much sympathy if the camera exposes them as traveling above the legal speed limit at the time of impact.
Likewise, footage of a collision with a stationary car that is parked illegally will potentially invalidate an insurance claim – and even lead to prosecution in some cases. Of course, this is technically just another way that a dash cam can keep insurance premiums down; such encouragement to follow the law of the land greatly reduces the chance of accidents occurring in the first place, and the necessity of making an insurance claim.