The last few days I’ve been reading more and more about near misses and actual hits from riders commuting to work… Some of these have been caputred on cameras such as GoPro’s etc.
So, this got me thinking… Do you commute with a camera, to catch any event that would warrant video evidence, to prove you were in the right if need be?
I don’t, currently, but after reading what I have done this week, it’s got me thinking that I might start to mount it for my rides to and from work… Just in case.
Sorry if this thread doesn’t belong here - I didn’t post it in the ‘Near Misses’ thread, as it isn’t a ‘Near Miss’, albeit related to them.
I don’t currently commute with one but I see more and more of them. I participated as a guinea pig a couple of years ago in a Monash Uni study that involved me wearing a helmet cam and vid-recording my commutes for a few weeks (HMC also took part). One thing I noticed was that motorists tended to moderate their behaviour when they saw I had a camera on my head. There were a few incidents where a driver would make eye contact or look over before pulling some dick move, all I had to do was point to the camera and they changed their minds. On one or two other occasions I was abused for, well, just being there…I said to my protagonist “see this camera? you are being recorded”…they also changed their minds. I got the impression that I was generally given a bit more elbow room on the road with the helmet cam…but that may have been just an impression.
To the extent that a CLEARLY VISIBLE helmet cam may or may not moderate driver behaviour I suppose it could help some with safety…but I’m prepared to admit that’s possibly a stretch. If there is an incident then there can’t be any debate about what happened (at least in the camera’s field of vision) and it could help you to assert your rights or a claim…like that bloke in Brisbane is now trying to do. It might be cold comfort after the fact, especially if you’ve been hurt but it’d be better than getting into “he said she said”.
Ironically perhaps I got hit on my way home a few weeks after I handed back the cam. Cops gave lip service but the driver lied well enough to create doubt about what happened and the one witness to the incident gave a false name and phone number (yeah…wtf? I was too adrenaline-charged to get her license # or rego as well as the driver that hit me) so it got written up as an accident. At least that was enough for a claim on TAC for doctors & physio etc. A vid recording of the incident would have at least meant I could have pressed police a bit harder and I would have had a some chance of getting some recompense for the damage to my bike.
I’d love to get one, my ride to work is through a large amount of logistic and shipping parks so I ride alongside some massive trucks.
Main problem is no net/computer so the end footage would be pretty useless.
I suppose if I got hit it’d be of some help, but the cost of setup just doesn’t really justify it.
I use a contour roam2 mounted on the helmet (tried it on the handlebars and the video was too jittery/shaky from the road)
battery life is good for about 5 x 1 hour commutes. i use a 16gb microsd at 1080p i end up with usually 3gb worth of video per commute.
havent noticed any difference in attitude when i have the camera on. perhaps drivers cant see it/dont care
The video quality is ok. The ads you see for those things look amazing, my actual ride footage does not. I find that seeing number plates on playback means i need to playback at half speed and then try pause at the right moment. Also any hint of darkness when you’re running a front light means you basically get video of a spotlight and not much else
All that being said, i do feel kinda weird/vulnerable when i dont have it as now i view it as some kinda safety device. The weight on the helmet is noticable at first but not unbearable
For about a $100 (mobius action cam) it seems like a pretty good insurance policy, especially if you commute. And if you already have a camera, why would you not use it ? hassle to set up? cant be bothered clearing memory etc?
With dryer weather around the corner ive been looking for a camera for my few days a week of commuting, kinda makes sense, especially if the majority of the ride is on normal roads and not paths.
Will probably pull the trigger soon, will post up a review once i get it all up and running
-You have to be living in a pretty fucked up society when you feel it is necessary to video an everyday activity like cycling in order to feel ‘safe’.
-If you are feeling particularly unsafe on a bike, what about changing your route to a quieter bike path etc
-Not somebody who owns a gopro, however is it feasible to turn it on and video it on a loop everyday, battery issues etc??
-Like others have said, perhaps better to have it facing rearwards