With the increased traffic on our roads, it has become more important for drivers of not only passenger cars but also commercial vehicles, to have some sort of electronic surveillance when on the road. An example of this is an in-car camera, or more commonly known as a dashcam.

Dashcams can act as evidence for insurance claims during your accident reporting process. It is also used to identify any drivers who commit crimes against you or others. Being in the commercial vehicle business, we understand the importance of all vehicles, whether purchased or leased, to be equipped with a dashcam. Fleet owners can make use of them to better manage their drivers and fleet with a dual-lens dashcam where it records both in and out of the vehicle. It deters drivers from disobeying road safety rules, thus potentially reducing accidents on the road.

For all commercial vehicle owners, be it owning a van, light-duty truck, medium-duty truck, heavy-duty truck or bus, here are some features that you should look out for when purchasing a dashcam.

1. Video resolution

Needless to say, the higher the resolution of the camera, the clearer the recorded videos would be. While there are a few high-resolution cameras (720i or 1080i) available, a high-definition (HD) dashcam with a 1080p resolution would be the most recommended.

2. Video loop recording

This is important as dashcams have limited storage. This feature renders an external memory card unnecessary and takes away the need to constantly delete old files. A video loop recording automatically records over the oldest file when there is no memory space available.

3. Camera lens angle

A wide camera lens angle of at least 120 degrees is recommended. This enables the camera to capture as much as possible. A good vantage point would be to position the camera higher up on the windscreen, ensuring the best viewing angle.

4. Motion detector (G-sensor)

The camera is activated via a G-sensor. In parking mode, the camera will stay asleep. It will wake up and begin recording when the G-sensor detects any movements, such as a knock on the door or windscreen. This ensures that any theft or vandalism will be recorded. One major drawback is that the dashcam has a short battery life, causing the vehicle battery to be flat the next day. A secondary source such as additional batteries is required.

5. Built-in GPS

This helps to accurately pinpoint the vehicle location and even the vehicle speed when the accident occurs.

6. Date and time stamp

The date and time would be embedded on to recorded videos.

A dashcam is definitely an important device for all vehicles to have. However, all drivers should take note that it is a double-edged sword. While it can clear you of any wrongdoings and record the crime of others, it can also clearly put you in the wrong.