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Moscow Plane Crash Caught On Passerby's Dash Cam 253

Posted by timothy
from the tape-it-all-let-god-sort-it-out dept.
acidradio writes "Yesterday a Tupolev 204 (Russian-made aircraft equivalent to an Airbus 321 or a shortened 757) overran the runway at Moscow Vnukovo airport and crashed into a nearby highway. A plane crash is always bad, but what makes this seem different is how well it was recorded. It seems like everyone in Russia has a dashcam, here is footage. A driver who just happened to be driving by on the nearby M3 highway (right about here on the map) is pelted by flying nose wheels and a row of coach-class seats! An accident like this has probably never been filmed so up close. We are getting better and better at recording accidents and disasters (whether by coincidence due to overuse of surveillance or maybe on purpose). What does that say about our level of documentation and recording of people's everyday lives? And what's the deal with dashcams in every Russian car?"
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Moscow Plane Crash Caught On Passerby's Dash Cam

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  • Frosty piss? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Bearhouse (1034238) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @02:22PM (#42427111)

    Easy answer to this - I was working in Moscow all this year. If you have an accident, you HAVE to wat for the police to come to make an official report, (otherwise your car insurance will not pay out).

    When they get there, the person with the biggest bribe gets the favourable report...

    So, better to have a dashcam...

  • Dashcams (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 30, 2012 @02:22PM (#42427113)

    Dashcams provide proof of what happened in a culture full of corrupt law enforcement officers.

  • Re:Dashcams (Score:5, Interesting)

    by CdBee (742846) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @02:26PM (#42427141)
    And - it has regrettably to be said - in a culture full of batshit-insane drivers. Even President Medyedev has gone on the record as stating that the Russian Federation has a lot of very poor and excessively reckless drivers.

    Someone once told me that in Russian the words for yield/give way and surrender are identical and Russians surrender to nobody. Don't know if that's true. Not sure I want it to be....
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 30, 2012 @02:28PM (#42427163)

    The driving in Russia is absolutely horrible. That's precisely the reason why so many people over there have dash cams.

    As a matter of fact, as with anything else, there are a number of compilations of Russian dashcam videos that show some pretty outrageous things.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hlxHPJAONpE
    No wrecks in any other country have anything on Russia. Seriously.

  • by sabri (584428) * on Sunday December 30, 2012 @02:35PM (#42427203)

    Seriously, Dash Cams are the best defense against scam artists.

    Or to prove that you weren't the culprit. Have a look at these videos, taken from my own dashcam in San Jose, CA:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4BgkCUbeuck [youtube.com]
    This is my wife driving. Watch the grey SUV on the right lane at 00:09.

    Or the "best" one I ever caught: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9g7H0-NelI [youtube.com]
    Skip to 00:50 for the action. You can clearly see the red car turning left on a red light. After the accident I provided first aid until CHP arrived (none of the injured had life threatening injuries). I lived close to the accident site so I drove home and burned the 1080p video on a DVD and gave it to the police.

    Two months later I get a call from the insurer of the red car. Apparently they were unaware of the existence of the video: "Are you sure you saw that the light was red? Are you really really sure? Really??". So I answer "I got it on video on my dashcam". "Oh, ok, thanks -click".

  • by Above (100351) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @02:45PM (#42427267)

    Every Russian has a dash cam because the insurance company and courts there have a history of not paying out a dime unless you have proof. Where Americans seem to think in a "reasonable doubt" methodology from our courts, in Russia it's apparently "any doubt at all" and you lose. So if someone hits you while you're parked and they show up and say you ran into them you'd better have video or witnesses or something or no money for you!

    Other countries seem to have systems that skew that way, and thus more dash cams (China, Taiwan, Korea), but not the quantity of videos. I think that's due to the bad Russian driving, there's simply more wild videos coming out of Russia than anywhere else!

    Over at Jalopnik [jalopnik.com] there is an entire section devoted to Russian dash cams [jalopnik.com]. If you waste the next few hours watching them all it's not my fault!

  • Dashcams (Score:5, Interesting)

    by zyzko (6739) <kari,asikainen&gmail,com> on Sunday December 30, 2012 @03:01PM (#42427363)

    Apparently, dashcams are as popular as GPS devices in Russia, and you can get a basic model for an equivalent of about 40 euros, and an advanced model is as pricey as an advanced GPS is (with nice features). And the reason to get one can be seen in Youtube, if you are pretty much run into by a car with government plates you better have some hard evidence that you were not the culprit. As the traffic is often worse than in southern Europe (where there is a lot of honking and hand-waving, even "pushing it through" but people are used to minor dents in cars in cities and they don't often care) compared to the fact that there is a lot of high-priced cars in Russia and insurance money is big factor, plus as an added bonus police can be corrupt and the one with biggest handout on the scene gets the money from the insurance because of the police report.

    I live near a pretty busy skiing resort in Finland where there are a lot of Russian tourists this time of year. Most of them do drive responsibly. And I urge you to do so here abroad (we have a pretty decent police who can write accurate reports if there is an accident and are not for sale) as well as home. There is no rush here, just relax on the Sunday-traffic off the resort. Don't be a jerk in traffic, really.

  • by AK Marc (707885) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @03:09PM (#42427395)
    Added what to the tragedy? The cam-driver didn't do any additional damage to anything, and the driver in front didn't lock up their brakes or turn the wheel, as far as I could tell. And based on US data, locked wheels stop much faster than the average American driver (why cars like Mercedes are adding brake assist, where a quick application of the brake triggers a stronger stopping force than requested because American drivers don't stop nearly as fast as possible in their cars, rarely beyond what you get sliding along on melted rubber.
  • by Lost Race (681080) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @03:21PM (#42427455)
    The driver lost control because the car was hit by flying debris not visible on the dash-cam. After that he actually did a pretty good job of not making it worse.
  • by immaterial (1520413) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @03:48PM (#42427603)
    That camera looks pretty damn nice overall. But given that a simple GoPro can record quite clear 1080p, the 640x480 resolution seems anemic. Image quality isn't the absolute most important feature (as long as it is clear enough that you can see who did what), but I'd still love to find a great 1080p-capable dash cam (more likely to capture plate numbers of hit-and-runs or potential witnesses, etc.). I'm also a little wary of GPS data; normal flow of traffic around here is 5-10 MPH over the limit (depending on the road or freeway) and I'd hate to have someone entirely at fault for hitting me try to claim contributory negligence on my part based on my own recorded evidence (I'm sure someone here will take issue with this, but the camera is to cover my ass, not anyone else's).
  • Re:Dashcams (Score:5, Interesting)

    by prisma (1038806) on Sunday December 30, 2012 @03:55PM (#42427635)

    I was in Taipei a few weeks ago an saw that most taxi's had dash cams - very small, very common. It makes sense to me for have these for a multitude of reasons as stated above. I don't see these being sold in the US - yet another case being behind the rest of the world - but of course we will never admit that...

    I'd argue it's the opposite: It is because the relevant parts of American culture is/was ahead of many nations such that our police force and citizens are/were, on average, more honest than those in places where dash cams are more common and necessary.

    You could try to counter this by saying that there's been a regression in society these days but that would only deflect the argument to a completely separate but debatable subject of its own.

    The other replies ahead of mine have also already pointed out that dashcams are (and have been) available for sale in the US for quite some time. They just aren't very commonly used by the general public. Many law enforcement agencies already have them installed as standard equipment on their cruisers.

  • by JWSmythe (446288) <jwsmythe@jwsm[ ]e.com ['yth' in gap]> on Sunday December 30, 2012 @04:27PM (#42427781) Homepage Journal

    To start, I'm an American, living in the United States.

    I started recording all my driving a few months ago. I got a red light ticket, and I specifically remember the light being green until it was out of view, obscured by the roof of my car.

    I've also been in car accidents, where people lie about what happened. There have also been incidents where the police make wild claims about my driving which just weren't true. "Careless driving" where you were swerving in the lane is hard to argue in court, but easier with video proof.

    My logic is, rather than let my word stand up in court, let the video testify for me.

    Since I'm recording with my phone, it eliminates any question of if I'm texting or talking on the phone while I'm driving. I can't. The phone is busy recording. If I had a second phone, you'd hear me talking. The only talking you hear is the radio, or if I dictate license plates.

    I'm using the Android app "Torque Recorder". It's not perfect. Well, it's much less than perfect. It does record my OBDII information, but when it encodes to combine the data, the data and video skew. It's about 5 seconds in 15 minutes of driving. It also sucks down the battery in my phone horribly. In a 2.1A charger in the car, it drops about 2% in 30 minutes. Without charging, it will have sucked about 90% of the battery in 30 minutes.

    The other problem is the video quality. It's fine for seeing which car did what, and ambient noises. You can't read license plates. That's why I dictate the occasional license plate. If someone is driving badly, and I think there might be a problem, I already have the plate dictated which can be heard on playback. It also gets confused about focus. There's no setting for manual focus, and sometimes it'll focus back to the windshield rather than the objects in front of the car. Like, if it's raining, the focus changes from windshield to cars when the wipers sweep by.

    Sometimes the Torque Recorder encoding program can't actually encode the stored video. The video is just MP4, so it's fine. It just doesn't have the vehicle data included. If it had to go to court, I can provide the data file, since it's just a CSV.

    So far, I've been lucky. There have been some lunatics. I've had to make extreme maneuvers to avoid them, but so far there has been no accident. Lately, I've caught the end result of two accidents resulting in fatalities (after the police arrived, not the accident itself), and lots of smoke from people locking up their tires skidding to a stop just short of accidents.

    I don't worry about it while I'm driving. I just have to remember to start it when I start driving, and stop it when I get to my destination.

    Since it's recording some select OBDII information, I have my throttle position and actual ground speed recorded, rather than trusting the

    I intend to work on my own app, and hopefully fix the video quality, battery life, and encoding problems.

    Hopefully I'll never be "lucky" enough to catch a plane crash.

It is impossible to travel faster than light, and certainly not desirable, as one's hat keeps blowing off. -- Woody Allen

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