17th October 2014
A quarter of motorists believe in-car cameras should be made compulsory to stop ‘crash for cash’ scams that push up the cost of car insurance.
A survey by motoring organisation RAC showed a significant number of motorists would be in favour of compulsory cameras to end the reckless criminal culture of crash for cash that affects thousands of motorists a year.
A total of 71% of driver said in-car accident cameras would reduce the number of bogus car insurance claims from stage car crashes, which has become a billion pound industry for unscrupulous criminals. Nearly two in five drivers said they are considering fitting in-car cameras themselves in order to fight back against the criminals.
A total of 4% of motorists already have an in-car camera, with the majority (59%) saying they bought it to have a record of what happened in case of an accident and a fifth said specifically that it was to protect against crash for cash claims.
The Association of British Insurers (ABI) estimates bogus claims rose by 34% last year to 59,900 and whiplash claims of £2 billion added £90 a year on average to car insurance and earned the UK the moniker of whiplash capital of the world.
Pete Williams, RAC head of external affairs, said: ‘Accident cameras or in-car cameras are commonplace in some countries where unscrupulous driving practices are a more regular occurrence. With crash for cash crimes unfortunately becoming more prevalent on UK roads, motorists are looking to in-car cameras to protect themselves from being taken advantage of.’
He added that used correctly, dashboard cameras are a valuable way to record the circumstances of an accident and help reduce the cost of personal injury claims, which should reduce the cost of insurance.
‘Making in-car cameras compulsory would come at a cost initially but they could pay for themselves in the long run if they cut the nation’s premiums,’ said Williams. ‘When used in conjunction with a telematics ‘black box’ they can also provide accurate information of driver behaviour to help customers and insurers to deal with claims more quickly.’