By: Brian Storjohann, ERIS

Although dash cameras have been around for decades now, they are becoming more and more popular not only in the private sector, but the commercial sector as well. The number of companies recognizing the importance of dash cameras is growing daily, and because of that the options for purchasing dash cameras is also growing. Here are just a few things to think about if your company is in the market for purchasing dash cameras.

What is Your Need?

If your company is more interested in watching its drivers anytime they get behind the wheel, an inward facing camera should be one of the options you look for when shopping for dash cameras. It provides the company the capability to see what the driver is doing and can help identify habits that need to be broken. If your company’s need for dash cameras is to assist with what is going on in front of the vehicle (accidents, other bad drivers, etc.) than the outward facing camera is the option you should be looking for. This helps quickly identify who is at fault in the case of an accident and can minimize long drawn out mitigation only resulting in higher claims costs regardless of who the at fault party is. If your company wants to see down the side of the vehicle or behind the vehicle, there are options out there for those types of cameras as well. Many of these cameras can also work hand in hand with the other options listed above, so before you start buying cameras, know the purpose of having them in the vehicle in the first place.

What Are You Hoping to Capture?

If your company wants the cameras in the vehicle strictly to help determine the at fault party in an accident, the WiFi option might not be something you need. The information can be recorded to an SD card and then pulled from there, but keep in mind, this will be extra time and effort for your fleet manager. If your company is more interested in seeing real time what is going on in the fleet vehicles at any given time, then the WiFi option is probably something that wants to be considered. This option almost always comes with a monthly fee per camera, so if this is the route your company wants to go, there is going to be more cost expected with this option.

Do You Really Need to Buy/Install Dash Cameras in Your Fleet Vehicles?

While there is a growing number of companies seeing the benefits of dash cameras, there are still many companies out there that just see it as an added cost. “What if my driver is at fault? Now the dash camera footage proves it and I’ll have to pay!” When this issue comes up, the response should always be, “Exactly!” If you know your driver is at fault, wouldn’t you rather pay the claim and move on? You avoid a long drawn out litigation process and avoid additional court and attorney fees. So if your driver is at fault and you have the footage, you avoid all of the grey area and added expenses that come with it. And if your driver isn’t at fault, you have the footage to prove it and can avoid the he-said-she-said scenario.

Where Can I Buy Dash Cameras?

There are a variety of options out there with a wide range in price. A word of caution here: You will get what you pay for. If you want to buy the cheapest camera on the market, that’s the type of product you will get. Evaluate the need of your company for these cameras, the budget set aside for the cameras, the features your company is looking for and that should narrow down the available options quite a bit.

 

Brian Storjohann is the VP Research & Development for eRisk Solutions.

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