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Should I Get a Dashcam for My Vehicle?

If you’re involved in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, it’s important to have evidence that shows you weren’t at fault. In many cases, evidence includes things like witness statements, tire marks on the road, impact zones on vehicles, and descriptions of what happened from involved drivers.

However, those types of evidence pale in comparison to clear video footage, and that’s a big reason why many people have installed dashcams in their vehicles. In addition to aftermarket dashcams, some vehicle manufacturers are including them as standard features in certain models.

With prices dropping and video quality increasing every year, you may be wondering if it’s time to install a dashcam in your own vehicle. If you’re thinking about getting one, here’s what you need to know.

Installing a Dashcam Can Give You Peace of Mind

It’s common for the aftermaths of car accidents to be finger-pointing affairs where both sides blame the other for causing the crashes. If you’re involved in a crash that wasn’t captured on video, it can be difficult to determine who is truly at fault.

Dashcam footage is permissible as evidence in Oklahoma car accident claims. That means if you capture clear footage of another driver running a red light or stop, pulling out in front of you, or merging into your lane and causing a crash, that footage can help prove the other driver’s fault in causing the crash.

Consider a Dashcam with Night Vision

According to the National Safety Council, most drivers only do one-quarter of their total driving at night, but 50% of crashes happen after the sun sets. Driving at night is statistically more dangerous than driving during the day, and the accidents that happen at night are more likely to cause serious injuries and even fatalities than daytime crashes.

Standard dashcams are good at providing a clear view of what’s happening during the daytime, but their ability to record nighttime driving is hit or miss. Even well-lit urban areas may pose a challenge to many dashcams, while unlit rural roads may be nothing more than blurry smudges when played back on computers and other devices.

Thankfully, many modern dashcams have night vision features, which make it easier to see what’s happening when it’s dark outside. This feature not only provides a clearer picture of the location and movement of other vehicles, but it also makes it possible to make out hard-to-see details like license plate numbers and road signs, even in dark and poorly or unlit areas.

If You Get a Dashcam, Don’t Mount it On Your Windshield

First, it’s important to note that dashcams are legal in Oklahoma. However, it is illegal to mount them directly on the windshield of the vehicle. That’s because windshield-mounted dashcams can obstruct the driver’s view of the road and nearby vehicles.

Instead, you should mount your dashcam to your dashboard in a location where it doesn’t obstruct your view. The point of your dashcam should be to record what’s happening in front of your vehicle in the event of a crash—not making you more likely to crash!

 Test It Out After Installation

After deciding where you want to install your dashcam, you’ll want to do three things:

  • First, ensure that the dashcam has a clear view of the road. Make sure the lens is angled so that the majority or all of the frame is filled by the road and not your dashboard. Placing your dashcam in the middle of your dashboard not only means less obstruction of your view, but also a wider view of the road.
  • Second, ensure the dashcam is recording and you can view the footage. Some dashcams turn on automatically, while others must be manually powered on and off every time you drive. Make sure yours records when you leave home and that it has plenty of storage. Your dashcam won’t do you any good if it’s not actually recording or saving the footage of the driver who crashed into you.
  • Finally, continue to test and review footage from your dashcam over time. It’s possible for dashcams to stop recording even when indicators say they are, for their lenses to become fogged, dirty, or out of focus, and for memory cards to corrupt and stop storing new data. Regularly review footage captured from your dashcam, whether it’s on a computer or the dashcam itself, to ensure it’s still working properly.

Contact Our Oklahoma Car Accident Lawyers after a Crash

If you’re injured in a crash, having dashcam footage of what happened can be beneficial when it comes to getting the compensation you’re owed. However, it’s not a requirement! At Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers, our Oklahoma City car accident attorneys built countless successful auto accident claims before dashcams were available, and we continue to build them even when video footage of our clients’ crashes is unavailable.

Our legal team has the experience and resources to help you get the money you’re owed. We can locate, collect, and analyze all available evidence to prove you weren’t at fault, and we can calculate exactly how much money you’re owed for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact us today for a free case review.