Should You Buy a Dash Cam?

By |2018-07-27T15:54:24+00:00February 2nd, 2018|Downtime|

How often have you witnessed some driver weaving in and out of traffic, cutting off drivers, and tailgating other vehicles? You think to yourself, “I wish I had a dash cam so I could report this driver!”  Now is the time to consider purchasing one before the next incident happens. Here are some pros and cons.

Dash Cam Pros:

  • In the event you’re an innocent victim of an accident, the dash cam is your best witness. It provides real-time evidence and helps you better recall what happened.
  • The footage can be useful in helping an insurance adjuster determine who’s at fault and to what degree.
  • If the accidents results in a lawsuit, the evidence may help you win your case.
  • Dash cams with a GPS feature can track your location and speed which provide additional evidence regarding an incident. The GPS feature can track how many miles you have yet to travel and an estimated time of arrival—helpful for long hauls.
  • If you operate your dash cam while the engine is off, it can act as another form of security while you are parking, loading, sleeping, or away from your truck.
  • A dash cam may make you more aware of your own driving habits, resulting in being a more careful and alert driver.

Dash Cam Cons:

  • The dash cam footage may actually prove you’re the at-fault party in an accident.
  • If you are the guilty party to an accident, your dash cam footage may be used against you by the adverse party, the adverse insurance company, or the adverse attorney.
  • The position of the dash cam can be distracting, depending on the position you have placed it on the dashboard or windshield.
  • You might be tempted to take your eyes off the road to watch what’s being recorded or you might want to play with it or reposition it, resulting in you being the cause of an accident.
  • Many dash cams only provide a one-sided view (about 140 degrees in the recorded image). Depending on where they are mounted, they might only record what is in front of the vehicle and not on the sides or rear. Another vehicle reaction, like an erratic phantom vehicle, may have contributed to the accident. Perhaps having more than one dash cam facing different directions may solve this issue.
  • Just like the radar detector, the dash cam may be illegal in some locations. Check your local laws before installing a dash cam in your truck.

Dash Cam Costs:

The cost of a dash cam is just like every other gadget;  it depends on the bells and whistles.  A dashcam can range from $30.00 to $200.00+ depending on features like GPS, image quality, audio inside vehicle and screen size. Dash cams are easy to find and can be purchased at Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Amazon, and many other retail and internet stores.

Overall, a dashboard camera may be a very good investment, especially given the time a professional driver spends on the road. Dash cam footage is merely one more way to protect yourself with sound evidence against lawsuits, fraudulently staged accidents, hit and run drivers, and private property incidents where police will not investigate or issue citations.

We invite you to visit our booth at the Mid-America Trucking Show March 22-24, 2018 in Louisville, Kentucky (truckingshow.com).  We will be giving away 2 dash cameras. We would love to meet you and answer any questions you might have about dash cams and downtime claims.

About the Author:

Kelsea Eckert
Kelsea is passionate about helping clients resolve their insurance and downtime claims. She is active in the trucking community and is frequently asked to speak with groups about insurance and downtime topics. Full Bio →