How Dash Cams Can Help Lower Your Insurance Costs

April 28, 2021

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Key Takeaways

Dash cams can save your fleet money in a number of ways, but one way you may not have considered is in lower insurance costs. Dash cams can encourage safe driving behavior, exonerate drivers from staged accidents, and expedite investigations. Plus, partnerships with major insurance companies can save your business even more money through reduced insurance premiums.

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If your fleet uses dash cams, then you likely already know how they can save you money out on the road. Dash cam footage can help you train your drivers to avoid car accidents, and in the unfortunate circumstance that an incident does happen, video footage from your dashboard camera can exonerate your fleet’s drivers.

One area where you may not have realized that your dash cam can help is by lowering your insurance rates. In fact, thanks to proven safety improvements and better visibility into risk, 15% of Samsara dash cam customers have been able to reduce their insurance premiums. Let’s see how they did it.

How can dash cams reduce your insurance premiums?

When thinking about all of the potential causes for car insurance companies to impose higher rates, perhaps the most notable is vehicle accidents. Among all of the financial burdens that come with accidents, companies could face crippling insurance payments in the form of higher insurance premiums, liability settlements, life insurance, and survivor payouts. In addition, “nuclear verdicts” burden insurers with exorbitant penalties, forcing them to cascade down these costs in the form of increased insurance premiums to fleets. These additional costs exacerbate steadily increasing insurance costs, causing fleet owners financial difficulties.

With video telematics, however, you can reduce many of the issues that come from or lead to accidents. Here are just some of the benefits that dash cams offer to help reduce insurance costs: 

  • Better risk insights: The best way to deal with increased insurance rates resulting from car accidents is to avoid them in the first place. With dash cams, you can spot dangerous driving habits in your fleet like distracted driving, tailgating, rolling stops, and harsh driving and coach drivers proactively to reduce risk.

  • Identification of crash-for-cash scams: Staged accidents and other forms of insurance fraud can be a drain of money and time, either to disprove or to settle. Using video evidence to defend innocent drivers against fraudulent claims prevents costly legal battles and unnecessary payouts.

  • Quicker investigation for legitimate insurance claims: When an incident does occur, the time it takes to determine the cause can be costly. Modern dash cams streamline the process with full HD recordings that you can share with your insurance provider.

What features should you consider when picking a dash cam?

Picking the right dash cam can save your business money by decreasing the frequency and severity of accidents, exonerating drivers from false claims, and potentially even reducing your insurance premiums. Studies show that some fleets see as much as an 86% decrease in accident-related costs when dash cams are used. When considering which device is best for your fleet, however, keep in mind that insurance companies like Nationwide and Progressive prefer dash cams that have features designed to meet safety-focused key performance indicators.

Here are a few dash cam features to look for that can demonstrate your commitment to improving fleet safety:

  • Artificial intelligence (AI): Advanced dash cams with built-in AI can detect issues like tailgating and distracted driving, letting you know when a driver needs coaching on risky behavior and near misses before they become issues that might affect insurance rates.

  • Audio speaker and recording: Built-in speakers can play alerts when unsafe driving behavior is detected, while microphones can capture audio during safety events to help give context to insurance companies.

  • Field of view: The more road your dash cam can see, the more it can capture, so it helps when presenting footage to have a wide or semi-wide angle lens.

  • Safety event detection: In the event a safety event is detected—like harsh braking or a collision—you can set up your dash cam to auto-upload footage to the cloud, giving you and your insurance company quicker access to video.

  • Cloud-enabled: In case of an incident, access to footage is key, so choosing a modern dash cam that can auto-upload footage to the cloud saves time and money over traditional devices that rely on micro SD cards.

  • Night vision: For fleets with drivers that operate at night or in low-light conditions, infrared LED is vital to capture clear footage, especially for unlit cabs.

  • Resolution: Image quality is key when presenting evidence to insurance companies. Forward-facing dash cams should record video in 1080p full HD. This will make it possible for you to see the road ahead clearly and make out numbers on license plates.

Samsara AI Dash Cams offer additional benefits that can help with all of these. Two major examples are our proximity search and video retrieval features, which can help you pinpoint a vehicle’s location and retrieve on-demand HD footage within minutes. This makes it easy to exonerate drivers on the spot, bypass lengthy claims processes, and eliminate unnecessary payouts. For Mitchell Companies, this added up to a 34% decrease in auto claims and a savings of about $150,000-$200,000 by exonerating drivers with Samsara dash cam footage.

How can Samsara save you even more through our partnerships with auto insurance companies?

9 out of 10 customers say Samsara has helped improve safety within their fleet, and more than 50% of our dash cam customers have used Samsara footage to exonerate drivers in the past year, saving $5,000 to $25,000 on average, with some customers saving over $100,000 a year. These safety improvements and better visibility into risk have also helped 15% of Samsara dash cam customers reduce their insurance premiums. This has earned Samsara a reputation that has helped us establish partnerships with various auto insurance companies to offer policyholders auto insurance discounts.

In 2020, for example, Samsara teamed up with Nationwide to offer their trucking clients innovative solutions to protect their drivers, their trucks, their reputations, and ultimately, their livelihoods. Nationwide is offering subsidies to eligible policyholders who install Samsara telematics solutions and meet safety-focused key performance indicators. To further improve this experience, we created a dedicated team to support strategic product implementation consultation, so that businesses insured by Nationwide can spend less time installing products and more time promoting fleet safety and safe driving.

Similarly, Progressive offers businesses a 5-18% discount on insurance premiums by sharing Samsara data directly with the insurer. By sharing programmatic data as part of a shared commitment to safety, theft prevention, and strong operational management, insured businesses will gain not only the benefits of our dash cams, but the potential to speed up investigations even further.

Samsara customers are already seeing real savings while promoting safe driving. Simco Logistics received a 15% reduction in their insurance premium after installing Samsara’s dual-facing dash cams and demonstrating decreased liability with fewer harsh events and accidents over time.

Learn more about how Samsara’s video-based safety solution can deliver savings for your business, or get in touch with our team today to try out our AI Dash Cams.

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