Cam owners dash to help police

Cam owners dash to help police

The National Dash Cam Safety Portal has been launched by dash cam manufacturer Nextbase. The service is supported by 19 Police forces in the UK.

The dash cam producer NextBase, is working with UK police forces to provide an online system that allows dash cam owners to directly upload footage to the police, the system, which Nextbase has made free to both the public and the police, provides a direct link between drivers and their local police force. The footage can then be used as evidence by the police when needed, dramatically reducing the amount of time police spend gathering this vital evidence in serious traffic incidents and even crimes.

The NDSP website allows users to select their local police force and upload footage quickly and easily. At the time of writing 19 of the UK’s police forces are set up and able to accept footage, this number is likely to grow rapidly over the coming months. The NDSP scheme has been set up because of the successful ‘Operation Snap’, piloted in North Wales. While the operation was ultimately successful and led to all four of Wales’ police forces adopting the scheme, the process was still quite slow and cumbersome, requiring officers to review footage and contact the user to gather witness statements. NDSP simplifies the process by asking the uploader to answer a few questions as part of the upload process that go to form a witness statement, which is attached to the footage; reducing valuable police time.

According to Which, the number of dashcams installed in UK cars is growing rapidly. A survey by Aviva of 2500 cars showed that 27% of drivers use dash cams on UK roads, 72% of those thought that all drivers should have a dashcam in their car.

Some UK insurance companies have started to accept dash cam footage to resolve claim disputes more quickly and efficiently. Dashcams, once viewed as simply a source of outrageous Russian YouTube motoring videos, are rapidly becoming the norm amongst British motorists. Dashcams not only protect the owner in the case of an accident, they are also proving to be a vital tool in protecting other road users including pedestrians and cyclists. Nextbase’s NDSP system has also gained the support of road safety charity Brake, as well as the bicycle charity Cycling UK, with Brake’s Joshua Harris heralding the NDSP portal as “an elegant solution, which enables the police to process this vital data without wasting their scarce resources”.