I have 3 kids who are in college. They all drive to school. As a father, one of my biggest fears is that they encounter problems while driving.
Particularly, I am worried that my kids will be subjected to unpleasant hazards while driving like:
- Dishonest drivers who refuse to accept responsibility for car accidents they clearly caused.
- Fraudsters and unscrupulous pedestrians causing their own accidents to blackmail motorists .
- Hot headed drivers with road rage tendencies.
- Corrupt policemen harassing drivers for committing unfounded “violations”.
In my over 30 years of driving in the Philippines, I’ve had my share of encounters with these hazards and often they left me stressed, angry, or depressed for several days. In those situations, it was always my word against the other party and more often than not, we end up with either a stalemate (I’m left to fix my own damage and the other party gets scot free) or worse, I lose the argument (I pay the ticket or damages or I get hurt) due to lack of evidence for my defence.
To protect my kids from these situations, I use a dashcam.
Dashboard Cameras (or dashcams) provide useable evidence to defend the driver against the other party. If a dishonest driver or a fraudster pedestrian insists that an accident is my kid’s fault, the dash cam allows me to establish otherwise. If the “road raged” driver does anything violent, the dash cam provides evidence to file complaints against him. And if a corrupt policeman tries to harass my kid, the dashcam helps prove my child’s innocence.
The dashcam works in my kid’s favor only if he or she is truly innocent. If he or she is at fault, then the dashcam gives me, the father, an insight on how to discipline my child and prompts me to make good on the settlement with the other party.
According to Stephanie See Dee, the owner of Zumi, a fast growing dashcam brand, having a dashcam is like “following the Boy Scouts’ motto — always being prepared”.
“Why wait for an incident to happen before getting a dashcam? We spend so much money on buying a car, so I think it’s worth investing a small amount to get a dashcam. Parents should consider getting one – if you think you can talk your way out during an accident or traffic “violation”, are you sure you’re children are able to do so?” — Stephanie Dee
Priced at P3000 to P5000, quality dashcams are relatively cheap investments which can yield very good “returns”. In the past years, when dashcams were still priced well above the standard consumer’s budget, only large companies were interested in dashcams. But with the introduction of affordable dashcams, individuals and small business are now following suit.
Companies install dashcams in their fleets. Taxi operators, commercial or public buses – they can protect their drivers from rude or aggressive customers School bus operators, driving schools can improve their service by ensuring their drivers are being safe on the road and that their precious passengers are in good hands.
In the coming years, we are anticipating that dash cams will become as common in the car as GPS navigators or backing cameras. With car insurance providers and car dealers becoming more cognisant of the value of dash cams to the car owners, we expect to see more bundling and promo activities involving dash cams which will benefit the motorists. This trend is already seen in other countries and we hope the Philippines will follow suit very soon.
In Singapore, a car insurance company is giving free dashcams for every plan purchased. In the UK, they’re giving car insurance premium discounts if you have a dashcam installed in your car. These companies have the foresight that having a dashcam means fewer cases of insurance fraud. As for car dealers, they would save a lot of money from servicing cars from having safer drivers.