Tag Archive | "car crash"

Keep Your Virtual Eye On The Road


Most drivers by now will be well aware of the ‘crash for cash’ scams that are rife in some parts of the country. To combat this, thanks to modern technology, motorists are installing video cameras in their cars to combat these fraudulent and dangerous claims. The cameras, popularly known as ‘dash-cams‘, record the view through the windscreen and capture events before, during and after a collision.

The recorded footage can also be used by defendants against accusations of lane-hogging or tailgating on motorways following new fixed penalty legislation which came into force a couple of months ago.‎

Increasingly, retail outlets are beginning to stock these devices as demand increases. This sort of technology has been found for years in police cars and other emergency vehicles. Thanks to the crooks it now seems almost essential that drivers record their journeys for their own protection.

The Insurance Fraud Bureau reckons that some 30,000 ‘crash for cash’ incidents take place every year. That’s an incredible number. The scam costs insurers around £350 million and inflates premiums for honest, innocent drivers by around £44 each.

To counter this, the bandits have a new and even more dangerous tactic that all drivers need to be aware of. They flash their headlights to give victims the impression they are being allowed to join a main road but then accelerate in order to hit the unsuspecting driver side-on. They then claim that the poor victim had pulled out in front of them and it is almost impossible to prove otherwise.

Thanks to the range of devices now on offer, motorists have the means to produce hard, irrefutable evidence as to how an incident occurred and who in truth was to blame.

There is a very wide range of cameras on offer ranging in price from around fifty pounds up to a couple of hundred. Buyers need to inspect the merits of each and decide what is best. A wide angle view would seem best, for example. Also, these days apps are available for smartphones which can be rigged in cradles and can do a similar job for very little money. They won’t be quite as good as a device made for the job but it is better than being held responsible for something that isn’t your fault.

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Car Repairs Overlooked As Households Struggle


A total of sixty people have just been convicted of, or pleaded guilty to, one of the UK’s biggest ‘cash for crash’ scams. Drivers living in the area of these scams have had to pay up to one hundred pounds more for their car insurance as a consequence of this criminal activity.

The cost of these inflated premiums is just another burden for struggling motorists who are battling to balance the books at home and on the road. It has now been estimated that a million car owners are driving around in accident damaged vehicles because they are wary of losing their no claims discounts and, as a consequence, having to pay much higher premiums as the insurers seek to recover their outlay.

The problem is that although the damage may appear superficial it could in fact be compromising the safety of the car. It’s understandable of course; with household expenses fighting with high fuel prices and other motoring costs for supremacy, somewhere, something has to give. As a result car repairs are being ignored because drivers are selecting the highest possible ‘excess’ offers on their policies – some as high as £750 which greatly reduces premium cost – and then finding they don’t have the funds to effect the repair privately, unless it is of a very minor nature.

National average mileage has dropped significantly as motorists cut down on driving to save money but the number of accidents has remained largely static. What has changed is that the percentage of accidents reported to authorities has fallen by 2.2% and, crucially, the number of recorded repairs has dropped by an scary twenty one percent.

The safety risk is that the damage done by minor prangs may be more than cosmetically skin deep. The structural integrity of the vehicle may have been affected in some way. There are components at the front of the car; the structural ‘crash box’ (a zone in the front of the vehicle designed to collapse under heavy impact thus reducing the consequences of the crash on the passenger cell), radiator, hydraulics or airbag sensors could all have received part of the impact which could at a minimum have moved them out of true. The worry is that, in the event of a further unfortunate accident, the car may be less able to withstand the collision.

There seems to be no let up on the populace. Bills continue to increase even as income drops. It is therefore unsurprising that desperate drivers look at further ways to save. The trouble is, how long will it be before an accident becomes a tragedy as a consequence?

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