Should dash cams be mandatory?

A guide to dash cameras.

Drivers across Queensland have turned to dash cams in a bid to protect themselves legally.

A survey by Smith’s Lawyers revealed 38% of Queensland drivers believed dash cams should be fitted on all vehicles, with a further 31.1% wanting dash cams to be a compulsory feature on new vehicles.

RACQ spokesperson Lucinda Ross said the footage alone wouldn’t make or break who was at fault in a crash, but police and insurance companies could use the vision to conduct independent investigations to find the cause of a collision.

“Instead of relying solely on the dash cam to capture the moment, stick to the basics,” Ms Ross said.

“Make sure you record all relevant details of the crash and other drivers, get eyewitness accounts, take photos and file police reports.

“These are your true and trusted methods and the information most valued by your insurer.”

Ms Ross said motorists who have installed a dash camera must ensure it does not impede their vision.

“Motorists need to ensure their dash cam doesn’t obstruct their view and that they’re not touching it while driving,” he said.

“If you’re distracted from the road because you’re pressing record or changing the position of the camera, you could be accused of driving without due care and attention or driving while not having proper control of the vehicle.”

What to consider when buying a dash cam:

  • Look for units that record speed, GPS location and date and time of day for evidence.
  • Remember that many dash cameras utilise loop recording and will record over old footage if not stored externally.
  • Opt for cameras that have an automatic zoom function which can zoom in on the licence plate of an offending party.
  • Check if the camera has G-force sensors which will activate it in the event of a crash, even if your car is parked.

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