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Can dashcam footage be used in personal injury claims?

Car and road traffic accidents are amongst the most common causes of personal injury. In 2022 alone there were 135,480 road casualties, and while many of these result in nothing more than cuts and bruises, in other cases the consequences can prove catastrophic for the pedestrians, drivers and passengers involved.

The charity Brake reports that on average five people die every day on roads in the UK, and 84 people are seriously injured. With the exception of 2020 when fewer people travelled as a result of the pandemic, the figures have remained similar across the last decade.

So, it’s understandable why many families are taking additional precautions while on the road, like installing dashcams.


Dashcams are on the increase

In fact, it is estimated that around a quarter of drivers now have a dashcam fitted in their vehicle to bolster personal safety and to provide additional proof if an accident occurs, but while the technology can capture footage of dangerous or careless driving, can the evidence really stand up in court if the worst were to happen?

Here Personal Injury expert, Sarah Sadler, provides some insight into the role that dashcams can play in securing compensation and access to justice for those injured or killed in road traffic collisions.

“Rarely a day goes by where we don’t read about serious or fatal road traffic collisions across the country.” Sarah says.

“As a team we have represented hundreds of passengers, drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists, as well as family members, whose lives have been devastated because of injuries sustained as a result of the dangerous or careless actions of others.

“Our role is to help them to access the compensation needed to help them rebuild their lives, including accessing rehabilitation, making adaptations to their homes, and purchasing specialist equipment.

“Historically we have relied heavily on witness accounts and expert evidence to help us secure access to justice on behalf of our clients, but increasingly we are finding that dashcam footage is also available to help piece together the chain of events leading up to the crash.”


How can dashcam footage be used in PI claims?

In 2017, dashcam footage was reportedly used to help in a number of cases, including a Humberside hit-and-run, and the first UK jail sentence following a trial which included evidence from dash cam footage was handed down in 2015.

“Of course, the footage needs to be of a certain quality, which, given the high impact of many serious crashes, cannot be guaranteed,” Sarah explains. “However, any footage that is captured can be particularly valuable in cases where someone has died or is seriously injured and can't give their account of the accident or collision.

“It can also be used where there is a discrepancy in the account of events taken by the parties involved, of if someone is involved in a hit and run. We have found that having dashcam footage can speed up the process significantly.

“Furthermore, most authorities in the UK now accept dash cam footage as evidence of irresponsible driving, meaning that they can take action against drivers who flout the law before anything serious happens.  You should ensure that you place your dashcam so that it is not blocking your line of sight in any way. If placed incorrectly, you may be found to be breaking the law and any footage could be deemed as unreliable if the dashcam was blocking full view of the road ahead.”


Disadvantages of dashcams in PI claims

There are some instances where dashcam footage can have a negative impact on bringing a PI claim, Sarah explains.

“To bring a personal injury claim, we must demonstrate that the injuries sustained were as a result of someone else’s actions or negligence. While dashcam footage can certainly help to evidence that this was the case, it can also show what is known as ‘contributory negligence’.

“Contributory negligence can be proved, for example, if the driver making the claim exceeds the speed limit on a certain road or becomes distracted by their phone.

“Also be mindful of how you use any footage before, during or after bringing a claim. It’s important not to invade other road users’ privacy by, for example, uploading anything to social media.

“Likewise, you won’t want to make publicly available a vital piece of evidence that should only be used in court.

“Finally, be aware that deleting footage that may later be relied on in court could land you in hot water, especially if the other party was also injured.”


What else should you consider when using dashcams?

"Dashcams can be very useful for personal injury claims, insurance claims, and for criminal proceedings, but do make sure you adhere to the relevant laws when using them", Sarah cautions.

“There are restrictions on the use dashcams in some countries due to privacy laws, so check the laws before you travel. In addition, if you are using a dashcam in a company car that you share with others, you must make your colleagues aware.”


Banner Jones represents clients who have been seriously injured or impacted by the loss of a loved one in a road traffic accident. For further support and advice on issues such as employment, benefit and welfare rights, as well as help to access interim payments of compensation to relieve financial pressures, and cover immediate expenses please get in touch at

Sarah Sadler
  • Chartered Legal Executive
  • Head of Personal Injury

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