How A Dash Cam Could Help You In Court

Wednesday, 11 May 2016 10:54:52 Europe/London

The benefits of installing a dash cam in your vehicle are plentiful. Whether you drive to work on a daily basis, or only use your car at the weekend, there are many advantages associated with using this innovative technology.

Unfortunately, no matter how safe your driving is, you can never vouch for the habits of your fellow road users, this means that accidents on the road with little proof of who is at fault is very common. While some incidents are nothing more than small bumps leading to no injuries for either party, others are severe collisions that can result in death for one or more people. In years gone by, drivers have had to come to terms with the fact that no matter the extent of the car crash, some motorists will try their luck and attempt to use the incident for their financial gain. However, the dash cam is slowly changing this rather dishonest trend.

Why have a dash cam?

Having a dash cam means it is now possible to prove exactly what happened during the incident in question, providing essential evidence if a claim has been brought against you wrongly. What’s more, drivers who adopt the use of a dash cam are increasingly being offered discounted insurance premiums due to their willingness to have a unit that constantly monitors their behaviour while on the road.

Thanks to this benefit, authorities are using footage from dash cams more regularly in court proceedings after dangerous driving has been reported.

Crimes caught on dash cams

In December 2015, James Stocks from Tilson in Cheshire was jailed for eight months after his reckless driving was captured by a dash cam installed in a nearby car. He became the first person in the UK to be jailed as a result of this type of footage.

Stocks was imprisoned after being captured performing two dangerous overtakes on the A495 in Shropshire, which put the lives of his fellow road users at risk. Stocks was seen nipping past a silver Ford KA on a blind bend in his Volkswagen Golf, which caused an oncoming Transit van to swerve onto a verge to avoid a collision.

As if that wasn’t enough, the driver later sped past a grey 4 x 4 vehicle on a blind bend, coming scarily close to colliding with a white Vauxhall Insignia. Stocks was unaware he was being filmed by a dash cam in the car behind his, and was caught after the footage was posted on the website of PoliceWitness - an organisation that works with the police to solve driving-related crimes.

Just four months after the first dash cam conviction, shocking footage arose, which resulted in a driving ban for motorist Stephen Jack. Jack was seen attempting to undertake a fellow road user on the M6 motorway at Charnock Richards near Leyland.

In a classic case of road rage, Jack’s black pick-up truck was first noticed by driver Bob Hoton when he began to flash his lights behind him as he drove in the right-hand late of the busy motorway. Hoton explained he was unable to move over to let the Nissan Frontier passed because there were cars in the first two lanes. Rather than decreasing his speed, the perpetrator attempted to undertake, but collided with the Peugeot 3008, forcing the victim to spin and head to safety on the hard shoulder.

Luckily, the dash cam footage helped to convict Jack, who was given a six-month custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to complete 150 hours community service and pay £295 compensation, £400 costs and an £80 victim surcharge.

This shocking footage was released by Merseyside Police, showing a vehicle being attacked with bricks and causing injuries to an officer, along with damage to the vehicle. The car initially stopped before the driver and front seat passenger suddenly jumped out and began to throw bricks at the windscreen of the police vehicle, showering the officer driving in glass.

Initially, the Volvo was able to escape after speeding off around the Kirkby area, and eventually being lost on the M57. However, extensive enquiries meant that offenders Carl Foley and Karl Waring were eventually caught and given jail terms.

While we have only examined three cases here, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that dash cams are increasingly providing valid evidence in the quest to convict unsafe drivers. As dash cams become ever more popular, it means dangerous drivers like these can be taken off the road for good.

Get yours today

Make your time on the road safer by investing in a dash cam. Browse our collection here.

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