Benefits of Dashcams For Hauliers

The benefits of installing a dashcam

Over the past 20 years, dashcams have become ever more widely available. Entry-level models are more affordable, there’s a much wider range of models available, and top-of-the-range models are now technically very sophisticated with some systems offering 360-degree coverage around your vehicle and GPS-enabled telematics.

The basic considerations relating to forward-facing cameras haven’t changed a great deal. Benefits of installing a forward-facing dashcam can be significant. These include:

  • With a dashcam fitted, you, your insurers and / or the police may be less reliant on gathering evidence from third party witnesses at the scene of a crash or other criminal incident
  • Dashcam footage can help insurers defend claims and assist with investigations into potential fraud rings and organised crime where a claim has been staged
  • Footage also helps to swiftly resolve issues over liability which can save time and money and reduce costs such as loss of earnings and alternative vehicle hire
  • Quicker claims settlement means claim-related reserves may impact your claims experience, and consequently your premiums, for a shorter time
  • Dashcams can help encourage those behind the wheel to always drive safely, legally and with due consideration being given to other road users, particularly those that are vulnerable such as cyclists and pedestrians
  • Recorded footage can be used by managers to support a conversation with a driver about improving driving style and behaviour

Issues to consider before purchasing a dashcam

  • Make sure the picture quality is excellent. If number plates of other vehicles cannot be read and the footage is needed to support a legal case, then the evidence may not be admissible
  • Dashcams must not obscure the driver’s view. Care needs to be taken to ensure they are fitted only in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Make sure your dashcam is tamper-proof, that the data is secure, and is the best available to cater for GDPR obligations (see below)
  • Make sure you buy a dashcam that does what you need. There’s no point in paying for extra functionality that you don’t need. On the other hand, the sophistication built into some models can prove invaluable to a business. Take time to compare specifications and functionality
  • Dashcam evidence may be called upon by a third-party, or the police, and used against you. Do all you can to make sure you / your drivers drive safely and within the law

Those fitting a dashcam need to make sure they stay on the right side of the law.

Issues business needs to consider before installing dashcams

  • The need to comply with the General Data Protection regulations (GDPR)
  • The need to register with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)
  • Other users of the vehicle, and passengers in a vehicle, must be aware that a dashcam has been installed. Failure to make them aware is a breach of privacy and the consequences can be serious. This is particularly so if the camera also faces inwards and can be a significant issue for those operating vehicles such as coaches and taxis. Warning stickers inside the vehicle to inform passengers may be appropriate
  • Members of the public and other road users should also be made aware that a dashcam has been fitted. Outward-facing warning stickers stating that the vehicle has video equipment on board for incident recording purposes would be prudent
  • Make sure drivers cannot download footage themselves with the added risk that it might end up being shared on social media. Only authorised persons should be able to download video footage
  • If an incident takes place where you or your drivers are liable to prosecution, then the evidence gathered via your dashcam may be used against you. Destroying criminal evidence is a serious offence meaning dashcam footage must be retained even though it may be incriminating.

Passing dashcam footage on to the police

If you have observed an incident and wish to pass evidence on to the police, go to the National Dashcam Safety Portal.

Commercial vehicle insurance from Towergate

We can offer a range of commercial vehicle insurance policies to suit your needs. Read more on our commercial vehicle insurance webpage

For more information about dashcams and their deployment, talk to your usual Towergate contact.

All cover is subject to normal underwriting terms and conditions.

About the author

Chris North FCII, commercial vehicles insurance articles author Chris North FCII is a respected industry leader with over 40 years' experience, who has worked in the insurance industry in a variety of roles, accumulating a wealth of knowledge. He is currently Technical Manager for Towergate's motor division, providing expertise on all matters relating to motor fleet insurance, in particular haulage and self-drive hire fleets.