Many drivers in Canada are installing dashboard-mounted cameras (“dash cams”) to record their daily driving routines. As long as dash cams are used to record events taking place in public, in general they are considered legal in Canada and can be used as evidence in court.
When it comes to a motor vehicle accident, it is very common for the drivers, the passengers and even independent witnesses involved in the accident to provide differing accounts of how the accident occurred. If a personal injury claim is commenced and makes its way to a court, a judge and sometimes a jury must review all of the evidence and testimony to determine which party was at fault for the accident. The video evidence that was recorded by a dash cam may be the best evidence to show what happened before, during and after an accident.
WHAT IS A DASH CAM?
A dashboard camera is a small instrument used as a digital video recorder mounted on a motor vehicle’s dash or windshield. As the vehicle travels, the camera continuously records footage. Some dash cams can operate to record while the vehicle is parked or when the camera senses motion.
Typically dash cams have a limited storage capacity and they will overwrite older footage unless it is manually saved and stored by the owner.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF A DASH CAM?
Unfortunately, there are no car insurance savings associated with the use of a dash cam. However, there are a number of benefits of installing a dash cam in your vehicle.
Determining Responsibility: Footage from a dash cam can assist in proving responsibility for an at-fault car accident. Unlike the evidence of eye witnesses whose recollection of events can fade over time or be influenced, a dash cam captures the accident as it happened.
Catch Fraud Incidents: Insurance fraud is occurring more and more frequently, which can include staged accidents by other drivers, cyclists and pedestrians. Dash cam footage can protect individuals from becoming a victim of fraud.
Provide Added Security: Some dash cams can be programmed to record while a vehicle is both moving and while it is parked. This helps in cases of car theft, vandalism and hit and run incidents.
Fight a Driving Ticket: You may be able to use the dash cam footage to dispute a traffic ticket.
Improve Driving: Dash cams can help individuals improve their driving skills by providing video footage of their own driving so they can learn what they need to improve upon.
HOW DOES VIDEO EVIDENCE HELP A PERSONAL INJURY CASE?
The video evidence recorded by a dash cam can be very helpful in the case of a personal injury claim arising out of a motor vehicle accident as it provides unbiased proof of the events leading up to the crash between the motor vehicles involved in the accident.
The footage taken by the dash cam may also be useful in helping to identify potential witnesses to the accident, ie. bystanders or occupants of vehicles that may have stopped at the accident scene to offer assistance. Dash cam footage can be examined to determine license plates, vehicle descriptions or other identifying information about the individuals or vehicles at the scene of the accident that will assist in locating key witnesses.
Video evidence can also show the deceleration and acceleration of a vehicle, which can be valuable evidence in a motor vehicle accident case. Some dash cameras add speed data to their recordings.
Dash cameras also provide information regarding the location of the accident and some have GPS and Google map functions to add further details to show the location of the accident.
The video evidence can also show the position of the vehicles involved in the accident and the configuration of the intersection (if this is where the accident occurred).
If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident and have a dash cam on your vehicle, be sure to inform your personal injury lawyer that you have footage of the accident.
PERSONAL INJURY LAWYERS ADVOCATE FOR YOU
If you or a loved one have been injured in a motor vehicle accident as a result of someone else’s negligence, you will have many decisions to make following the injury. One of those decisions will be to find a personal injury lawyer to represent you and help you determine what your legal options are and the potential compensation.
Early contact with an experienced personal injury lawyer will help a victim in the aftermath of an accident by allowing him/her to rely on their lawyer for their expertise. A lawyer experienced in personal injury law will help alleviate the concerns and anxiety of the victim during the litigation process by ensuring that their client is not rushing through or reacting hastily to the process.
When you hire Cuming & Gillespie Lawyers, you can be confident that you are getting the best and most effective representation for your personal injury claim. We have more than 20 years of experience successfully representing injured clients in serious personal injury claims.
If you have been seriously injured, it is critical that you speak with a lawyer regarding your situation as soon as possible so as not to jeopardize any opportunity to seek compensation. The award winning personal injury lawyers at Cuming & Gillespie can help. Please contact us online or at 403-571-0555. It is important that you call us promptly so we can help you understand your rights and the potential to recover compensation for your injuries. Call our office for a free consultation to determine how we can help you.