Dash-cams to become familiar sight on UK roads
Following the horrific pile-up on the Sheppey crossing in Kent nearly two weeks ago, in which some 130 cars were damaged due to reckless driving in poor visibility, British insurers are considering plans to offer reduced premiums to those who record their journeys.
It comes as they face an estimated £20million bill over the pile-up, which they will be left to pick up due to a lack of evidence making it difficult to assess the responsibility of individual drivers in the crash.
Simon Marsh, of in-car video camera manufacturer SmartWitness, said: "This is going to cost insurers millions and several insurance companies have spoken to us already about reducing premiums for drivers who install our vehicle accident cameras. We have previously piloted the SmartWitness system with HGV haulage fleets and they seen a huge decrease in insurance payouts because they can see immediately who is at fault.
"Insurance firms have already been having to deal with bogus and exaggerated whiplash claims and now they are going to be faced with a huge claim from the Sheppey pile up which is going to be extremely hard to prove who caused. It's going to be a legal nightmare for all the insurers involved and without clear video footage from the event it's going to be practically impossible to prove who was at fault."
Insurers hope that with significant discounts to premiums, drivers will install in-car camera systems, which will not only aid in identifying reckless or dangerous drivers, but make motorists aware of their own driving habits.
Such camera systems are now being fitted as standard in may HGVs, and have already reduced insurance payouts by 80 per cent.
The SmartWitness camera attaches to the windscreen of a vehicle, usually behind the rear-view mirror and records to a video SD memory card. It's GPS compatible, too, meaning a car's exact location and speed can be determined at any point along its journey.
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