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Dashcams: Secret anti-road rage weapons

2015-04-01 09:41

STUNNING IMAGE: A dashcam frame from the now viral video of a 2014 plane crash in Taiwan. Image: YouTube

  Video

A growing number of drivers are using dash-mounted video cameras to document collisions and prove guilt/innocence in court or insurance claims.

JOHANNESBURG, Gauteng - Dash cams - video cameras that attach to the interior surface of a vehicle's windscreen - are growing hugely in popularity.

The terrifying video of a TransAsia plane clipping a bridge in Taiwan in 2014 and crashing into a river was captured on a dash cam by at least two cars. In 2013 a dash cam recorded a meteorite strike in Russia that injured more than 1000 people.

The head of Dialdirect, Warwick Scott-Rodger, said: "Dash cam sales have started to soar in Europe. Early 2014 sales in France were estimated to be about 370 000 - mainly people equipping themselves against a possible hit-and-run collision.

"In South Korea, the devices have become essential as deterrents for scammers who throw themselves on to the windscreen of slow-moving cars in a bid to claim insurance money. Some insurers even offer discounts on monthly premiums to car owners who have a dash cam.”

ROAD RAGE

Singapore’s largest taxi company has installed a dash cam in each of its 16 600 cabs to encourage prudent driving. Dash cams are relatively new in Australia but gaining traction to combat road rage.

Scott-Rodger said dash cams in South Africa could help to reduce aggression on the roads by providing evidence in case of a crash, crime and corruption. “Car crashes happen in a flash and sometimes the recollection of the people involved is unclear. Dash cams provide a solution to this problem."

Dialdirect urges those to choose to use a dash cam to insure it correctly. 

“All in all," Scott-Rodger said, "technology is making a significant contribution towards safer roads. The consensus is that dash cams are a positive development for road safety by encouraging all road-users be more responsible."


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