Does your HGV have a dash cam? We hope so! But if you don’t, then you’re missing a trick. Buying and installing a dash cam in your HGV could be the single most important investment you make into your safety and your career future. Over the years, dash cams have managed to capture some truly astonishing footage from accidents around the world, but almost always in the form of van, lorry or other commercial vehicle incidents. Sometimes it proves a driver is unsafe, but dashcam footage has also been used to prove that HGV drivers weren’t at fault for accidents at all, and keep innocent drivers names clear. In fact, security solutions provider Cobra UK has asked the government to legislate for front-facing cameras in commercial vehicles, as a way to protect against crash for cash scams. But even if the government hasn’t heeded this advice, there are plenty of reasons you should consider installing dash cam in your HGV. Here are just 4:
The insurances of ‘crash for cash’ scams have been on the rise over the last 5 years. And due to their nature, it’s often difficult, if not impossible for drivers to protect themselves against them. Unless you have a dash cam. If you’ve not heard of a crash for cash scam before, it goes something like this. A scammer will pull in front of a vehicle, usually on a fast-moving piece of road. They will then do something to intentionally cause an accident, like slam on the brakes when there is no need, or slow their car down to a stop without triggering the brake lights. This causes the victim to crash into them from behind – something that it’s easy for insurance companies to find the crash-er at fault for. But with a dash cam, the driver can prove that the accident was cause deliberately, and prove that the driver wasn’t at fault. If you’re not sure what we mean, here’s an example:
As you can see, the driver let their car coast in the fast lane of a dual carriageway. The driver of the HGV saw this and stopped long before contact was made. But the car behind the HGV didn’t see this, hit the HGV and forced the HGV forward into the fraudsters car. Without this footage, the HGV driver would have been found at fault, probably lost his job and potentially lost his licence too.
Even if there is no evidence that an accident was a result of a ‘crash for cash’ scam, dash cams can still be really useful when it comes to determining liability with insurance companies. Most cases are determined by eye-witness testimony only, which is spotty at best and often misses crucial details. But dash cams can provide insurance companies with impartial, factual evidence to help determine who is at fault. It’s a great way to avoid disputes and ensure you aren’t found at fault for accidents you didn’t cause.
Whether your drive one HGV or run a fleet of them, you know just how expensive the insurance can be. It’s even worse if you’ve not had your license for long, or you’ve been the victim of one of those ‘crash for cash’ scams in the past. But the good news is, insurance companies are now starting to realise how easy dash cams make their jobs easier, close cases quicker and make that blurry eye-witness testimony a thing of the past. In fact, they like dash cams so much that many brokers are starting to offer discounts for drivers or companies who equip their vehicles with dash cams. So it’s not only a great way to protect yourself, but you get some great savings out of it too!
And then you have the divisive option. If you run a fleet of HGV’s, this can be a fantastic bonus to having a dash cam installed, but for your drivers, it could be difficult to get on with, and if you’re independent then it really doesn’t have an impact. But as a fleet manager, a dual-lensed dash cam gives you the ability to monitor your driver’s behaviour and improve it. This can work well with your existing telemetrics data and helps you ensure that your drivers are representing your company at its best and driving responsibly.
At The HGV Training Centre, we strongly recommend having a dash cam installed in every HGV. Whether you run a fleet of them for your business or you are an independent HGV driver, a good dash cam is worth its weight in gold. If you’d like to know more about dash cams, how they work and which models we recommend, just get in touch with us today.
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