Can Dash Cam Evidence Be Used in Accident Cases in North Carolina?
Dashboard cameras, also known as dash cams, are becoming increasingly popular with drivers across the United States. There are a few reasons for the spike in dash cam use. The first reason is people want to minimize the risk of a “Your word against mine” scenario. Many of our clients ask, “Can dash cam video be used as evidence in North Carolina?”
A dash cam can absolve you of blame in situations where you would otherwise be assumed to be at fault.
Another reason people use dash cams is that parents find peace of mind by using a dash cam to manage the behavior of their children while behind the wheel of a vehicle. It can improve attentiveness among the young and save lives.
In this blog post we’ll examine dash cams and whether dashcam footage can be used as evidence in North Carolina lawsuits and injury claims.
Remember, if you are injured in a car accident in North Carolina, talk with an injury attorney right away. We can investigate the accident — including any dash cam footage — and help determine liability and your best legal options for pursuing a claim.
For a FREE, no-obligation consultation with a NC car accident lawyer, please call 1-800-525-7111 today.
What is a dashboard camera?
A dash cam is any device that attaches to your vehicle and records video footage of the road around you. Even smart phones can turn into dash cams by using certain apps. You only need a special mount for the interior of your car which allows the phone to record video of the road.
A mid-priced dashboard camera should record in high definition and have two cameras like a smartphone. The forward-facing camera will record the road in front of the vehicle and the rear facing camera will record the inside of the vehicle. Most dash cams now auto start and stop because they are plugged into the cigarette lighter and turn on when you start your vehicle and turn off when you stop.
They usually record using an SD card and are on a loop, so if the recording space is full it will begin to record over the older footage leaving you with the most up-to-date data. These dash cams can also record the rate at which you accelerate and decelerate. This could work against you if you are in an accident and you were speeding.
Should I get a dashboard camera?
One reason to get a dash cam is because memory can fade. If you are in an accident, or an incident happens on the road in front of you it is impossible to see or remember every detail. You may also be in shock or confused after a crash. Clear footage of what happened can be very valuable. In terms of insurance claims, a dash cam can help build a strong case in your favor.
Dash cams can also save lives. Many parents put dash cams in the cars their children drive. This can be a lifesaving move. With the camera recording the road and interior of the car, parents can later review the footage. Knowing the camera is rolling makes teens more aware of what they are doing and how they are driving.
Are dash cams legal in North Carolina?
Yes, dash cams are legal in North Carolina, but there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
Dash cams are a relatively new technology and there are no current federal or state laws regulating their use. Truckers and law enforcement have been using dashboard cams for quite some time. However, only a small number of civilians use dashboard camera technology.
There are general safety laws you must abide by if using a dash cam in the North Carolina. These cameras are mounted on the windshield, so it is important to make sure your vision is not obstructed. Also, North Carolina is a “one party consent” jurisdiction, meaning you may record a conversation without the other party’s consent if you are a party to the conversation.
There are no similar restrictions for video footage of the road because a dash cam won’t pick up audio outside of your vehicle.
In many U.S states and cities, you do have the right to video record in public places, such as roads, where privacy is not expected. It is important to note that you cannot record on private property. An example would be a supermarket or mall parking lot.
Can dash cam footage help if you are in an accident in North Carolina?
Yes, a dash cam can potentially help strengthen your case if you’re injured in an accident in North Carolina.
A dash cam will record what you see on the road in front of you. This footage can be used to verify your version of events leading up to an accident.
A dash cam can help you prove that another car ran a stop sign or red light or that the driver was driving recklessly. However, it is important to remember that a dash cam may work against you too. Depending on the type of camera you have, it may record you speeding, running a stop sign or using your phone.
In some cases, a police officer may seize your dash cam after an accident. Seizure of your camera may or may not be legal. Be sure to ask a North Carolina accident attorney to investigate the matter if your dashboard camera was taken after an accident.
Can evidence on a dash cam be used in an injury case in North Carolina?
The short answer is yes. Dash cam evidence can be used in negotiations with an insurance company and may also be used in court.
Dashboard cameras can help prove fault, but remember — they can also work against you if you made a mistake.
Have you been injured in an auto accident in North Carolina?
The accident lawyers at Riddle & Brantley are here to help.
Our car accident attorneys have more than 225 years of combined experience in personal injury law and can help you.
We can gather the footage from dash cams in other vehicles that were running if you are in an accident as well as review footage from your dashboard camera.
Please call 1-800-525-7111 or fill out the short form below for a FREE, no-obligation consultation with a North Carolina auto accident lawyer serving Raleigh, Durham, Fayetteville, Goldsboro, Greenville, Jacksonville and other NC cities.
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