A rollover car crash made me finally purchase a dashcam

There are entire YouTube channels dedicated to crazy Russia dashcam videos like “Axe vs Bat”.

Or a compilation of dash cam footage of multiple accidents in Russia.

A dashcam isn’t anything that I ever considered needing because what is the purpose? Why would you need it?

My opinion changed last fall as I was involved in a pretty serious car accident. I was sitting at an onramp to the highway in front of a red light. It’s one of those onramps that has two lanes and two traffic signals to help slow down the flow of traffic entering the highway.

My light finally turned green and I started to slowly accelerate to enter the highway. I glanced in my rearview mirror and saw a minivan coming towards me from the onramp that was going incredibly fast. I realized that they weren’t going to be stopping at the onramp light. Seconds later, the minivan smashed into the rear of my car sending it (luckily) straight for the embankment on the right side shoulder of the highway instead of into highway traffic.

The force of the hit from behind caused my car to flip over as soon as it hit the grass.

A precarious situation

A precarious situation

I saw there in the car completely upside down with adrenaline coursing through my veins. I had fortunately been wearing my seatbelt and was suspended in the air upside down.

From what seemed like an eternity, someone opened up the passenger door, looked in and said: “is everyone alright in there?”

I was incredibly stressed but realized that I was,in fact,alright and that the car had done its job and the body of the car had not crushed me inside.

“I think I’m okay.”

They asked me to see if I could get out of the car. I unbuckled my seatbelt, falling to the roof of the car and crawled out and outside. I stood up and miraculously ended up not having any broken bones or bruises or frankly any long term effects.

Fortunately,there were multiple eyewitnesses and her insurance paid for all the physical therapy, etc.

I decided that I couldn’t take chances anymore and that it was time to purchase a dash cam. Dash cams aren’t something that I’ve ever considered purchasing and there are a dizzying array of various brands, models, and features. I found a website that is totally devoted to dash cams called DashCamTalk. They even have a forum broken down by the manufacturer where people discuss the models ad nase um.

After much research, I finally decided on the Street Guardian SGZC12SG v2 Pro Edition.

I chose this particular brand and model because the manufacturer had several models that had won “Best DashCam” by DashCamTalk. In addition, the camera records in 1080p, has built-in GPS to record your location and speed traveled, and records a continuous loop of footage without you needing to take out the memory card and delete the footage.

Sample footage with the GPS stamped on the bottom

Sample footage with the GPS stamped on the bottom. Courtesy @Pier28

It’s powered by a cord that you plug into a cigarette lighter but also has the option of installing a direct power feed so that it records 24/7. I ended up doing this.

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This is what the camera looks like when mounted behind the rear view mirror. It really is easy to set it and forget it.

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I genuinely feel like that I am a much more safe driver knowing that every second of my driving is being recorded.

I’ve also witnessed a crash where I was able to provide the footage to the drivers as an eyewitness account of what had happened.

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In addition, I had someone back into me in a parking lot while I was in the car and therefore had proof of what had happened.

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The camera is also easy to unmount and transfer to other cars.

Having used the Street Guardian now for six months, I can confidently recommend it and when my son and daughter start driving, you can guarantee that they will have a dash cam installed as well!

Comments

  1. I recently bought this one https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B010H0SL9O/ref=ya_aw_oh_bia_dp?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    It includes a rear camera (only 480p as opposed to the 1080p front camera, but oh well) which is constantly recording along with the front camera. I don’t have a backup camera built into my car, but the rear cam from this product can be spliced into the reverse light of your car so it knows when you’re in reverse, and automatically displays the rear camera view on the display. So now I have a backup camera!

    The mirror is mounted over your rear view mirror. It’s super wide so I now don’t have a blind spot on my left. However, because it is super wide I can’t put my visors down (I knew this before I purchased and was okay with this). If I cut away a bit on the passenger side visor I could put that down, but the drivers side one would require far too much cutting.

    No GPS but I feel like it could be used against me more often than not (ie it would record if I were speeding).

    This is definitely not easy to transfer between cars as I had to drill holes to mount the rear camera!

  2. @lively – ideally I’ll get a rear cam too. But yes, the footage showed my car moving when hit as well as the sound of the car hitting me and showing that I was parked.

  3. Thanks for posting. After being hit by hit and run drivers TWICE, I’m definitely getting one!

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