Dashboard Cameras and Driver Compliance
Dashboard cameras were originally designed to record what was happening in front of the vehicle. With the footage admissible in court as evidence, they have proved invaluable in helping organisations beat bogus insurance claims and fraudulent “crash-for-cash” schemes. According to the Insurance Fraud Bureau, crash-for-cash fraud costs the UK around £340 million per year.
However, dashboard cameras, or dash cams as they are now commonly known, have now evolved to also include inward-facing cameras that monitor the driver. This helps fleet managers to better understand whether their employees remain compliant with the law when they are behind the wheel.
Just like a forward-facing camera, these dash cams automatically create an Event file when the vehicle is involved in a crash or a near-miss, as the accelerometer detects any sudden jolt or impact. This footage is sent immediately to the fleet manager, who can view it to confirm whether the driver was alert or distracted; or was committing infringements like using their mobile phone, or even not wearing a seat belt.
Using a mobile phone while at the wheel is not just illegal; it’s the biggest single killer of distracted drivers, according to the Department for Transport. Mobile phones are also estimated to be the cause of around a quarter of all crashes on UK roads.
While mobile phones are a problem across the board, lack of seat belt use is more closely tied to the road transport and delivery sectors. In March 2017, Suffolk police used an unmarked HGV to clamp down on drivers not using their seat belts. Over the course of just one week, they stopped 148 vehicles, recording 115 offences for seatbelt offences and 14 for using a mobile phone behind the wheel.
In a similar four-day campaign, East Midlands Police stopped 37 trucks, 3 cars and a van. They spotted 36 seat belt offences and three people using mobile phones while driving.
Camera systems that contain an inward-facing dashboard camera can therefore help deter drivers from breaking the law, and provide fleet managers with near-instant verification of the driver’s behaviour leading up to a crash.
Police can retrieve footage at the scene of a crash, in order to help them determine how the incident occurred. This means that innocent drivers can be cleared of wrongdoing straight away – and removes the need for the police to impound the vehicle pending further investigations.
Last year, a HGV driver from CS recycling, a Trakm8 customer, was cleared of fault at the scene of a serious collision with a motorcyclist.
Furthermore, Trakm8’s RoadHawk dashboard cameras use GPS and G-Force features to provide vital data into the circumstances surrounding an incident, such as vehicle speed and the precise time and location of the incident.
In this way, a combined front and inward-facing camera system can help exonerate innocent drivers and protect your brand.
With no subscription fees and no maintenance required, our cameras offer a great return on investment. They provide peace of mind, assist police and insurers in identifying the reasons behind any crash, and help you to save on insurance premiums. They also come with a two-year warranty and access to our UK-based customer support team.
To discuss the benefits that our dashboard camera solutions can bring to your fleet, complete the form below or call us on +44 (0) 330 311 5157.
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