NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Some Queens lawmakers are proposing a new bill that would slash insurance costs for drivers who have working dashboard cameras installed in their vehicles.
State Sen. Jose Peralta and Assemblymember Alicia Hyndman are proposing a 5 percent discount for camera-equipped cars.
They say the video drivers provide is invaluable to law enforcement in solving many situations.
As CBS2’s Sonia Rincon reported, the cameras can provide critical evidence in the investigation of a crash or crime.
State Senator Jose Peralta said the cams can also help stop fraud — they’re popular in Russia where accident fakers are a problem.
“Plus if motorists feel that they’re being taped by a dash cam, then maybe, just maybe they will think twice before engaging in reckless driving or leaving the scene of an accident,” Peralta said.
On Queens Boulevard, notorious for accidents, most drivers were on board.
“If you’re a responsible driver, sometimes accidents happen, but you still have the footage. Maybe it was their fault, and it’s good to have that,” Jodee Sarisky said.
“You know sometimes a guy cus in front of you, you run into an accident and at least you know it’s not your fault. It’s a great idea,” Eddie Perea said.
If you pay about $1,500 a year for insurance saving 5 percent of that could pay for a simple dash cam. At B&H they start at around $60 but go up to $500 if you want extra features like a G Sensor that senses impact.
“What ti does is it detects the shock, and it will take 5 minutes of that footage and create a special folder into that memory card,” Renis Kuci explained.
Kuci said many cams, as long as they’re on can go back in time to record a crucial moment.
“It goes back about 30 seconds, as far as a cache file, and it gives you a continuous recording,” he said.
Dash cams with two lenses are popular with cab drivers so they can capture what’s going on inside the car and what’s on the road.
AAA is doing a study to find out if the cams will be cost effective for insurance companies and drivers.
“We need more data. We need to be able to quantify it better as to whether a discount at all would be merited,” AAA Spokesman Robert Sinclair explained.
He said like seatbelts, airbags, and backup cameras, dash cams might become standard in the future.
Dash cam users are cautioned to be familiar with their state’s privacy laws, not when it comes to recording video, but when posting it online.
The proposal would also make it easier for authorities to obtain the video.