Distracted Driving Blog

Aegis Mobility's Distracted Driving Blog

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This month, we joined Senator John D. Rockefeller IV (Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation) in Washington for a day of meetings focused on the distracted driving problem and technology solutions.

In addition to Aegis, panel attendees included Apple, Google, Samsung, AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, Toyota and GM. The videos of the three sessions can be found here -

  1. The State of Distracted Drivingb2ap3_thumbnail_senate-seal.png
  2. The State of Technology
  3. Where Do We Go From Here?

Highlights of the day included:

  • Universal agreement on the severity of the problem
  • Clear opinion from Senator Rockefeller that industry, in pursuit of technology promotion and profits, may have placed responsibilities to society and safety as secondary
  • This led to good debate regarding the benefits of technology in saving lives (ex. OnStar) and the challenges of restricting consumers' choice
  • Senator Rockefeller gave compelling arguments that it is our collective responsibility to offer not just "what consumers want" but products that are designed for safe and responsible use
  • While there are many stakeholders with varying interests, it was clear that there is substantial collaboration within the industry to continually improve solutions and accelerate market adoption

The event was very useful to advance the dialogue amongst the key constituents responsible for providing technology solutions and Aegis applauds the Senator's leadership on this important topic.

At Aegis we continue to work with the leaders in the mobile device, mobile carrier, automobile and insurance industries to advance solutions. With our pioneering partnership with the State of Iowa, we are also beginning to deliver solutions through State governments.

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"These people are promoting death"

Posted by on in Buzz and Sightings

"These people are promoting death". Those are strong words but we would do well to heed the source. 

b2ap3_thumbnail_Globe-and-Mail.pngNicholas Ashford is professor of technology and policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and his quote refers to the auto manufacturers' decisions to prioritize consumer desires for increased technology in vehicles ahead of concerns for safety.

Dr. Ashford was quoted in a recent Globe and Mail article describing the tragic death of Emy Brochu and highlighting that distracted driving now exceeds impaired driving as the greatest cause of death on our roadways.

Aegis has launched TeenSafer to help ensure the safe and responsible use of mobile devices while driving and Aegis is working with partners such as the State of Iowa and Audiovox to bring mass-market solutions to consumers.

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Steering Teen Drivers Out Of Harm's Way

Posted by on in Buzz and Sightings

b2ap3_thumbnail_cnn-logo.jpgThanks to Kelly Wallace and the team at CNN for drawing attention to the distracted driving problem for teen drivers. 

While distracted driving affects us all, teen drivers are especially at risk due to their young age, driving inexperience and greater tendencies toward risky driving behaviours.

The New England Journal of Medicine recently published research from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) and, amongst the findings, included:

Drivers who are 15 to 20 years of age constitute 6.4% of all drivers, but they account for 10.0% of all motor vehicle traffic deaths and 14.0% of all police-reported crashes resulting in injuries.

Aegis has developed TeenSafer to reduce the risk of distracted driving for teens … and entire families. TeenSafer automatically enforces the safe use of mobile devices while driving but also encourages the entire family to use safe-driving software through "gamification" of safe-driving reports within the family.

The idea as expressed by one of our partners, the State of Iowa Department of Transportation, is to create awareness and conversations between parents and young drivers. TeenSafer encourages a positive form of "peer pressure" and healthy competition within the family to ensure that everyone is driving safely.

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The AAA Traffic Safety Culture Index (TSCI) was recently released and, amongst its findings, concluded:

  • Nearly 90% of respondents say that distracted drivers are a somewhat or much bigger risk today than three years ago
  • Approximately 95% of respondents said that texting or emailing while driving is perceived as a somewhat or very serious threat to their personal safety

And, yet, despite this conscious awareness of the danger, more than a third of respondents admit to reading messages in the past 30 days while driving.

This "Do as I Say, Not as I Do" attitude continues to be a fundamental issue that affects the safety of our roadways.

Aegis is addressing the problem with solutions that automatically place a device in safe mode while driving and eliminate dangerous distractions until the vehicle has stopped moving.

The full AAA TSCI report for 2013 can be found here.

 

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State Farm's fifth annual survey was released this week and underscores some alarming statistics over the last 5 years (2009-2013):

  • Reading email while driving has increased from 15% to 24%
  • Reading social media while driving has almost doubled from 9% to 17%
  • Accessing the Internet while driving has reached almost 1/4 of all drivers (up from 13% in 2009)

As smartphones become omnipresent in our lives, the temptation to use them while driving continues to grow.

Fortunately, 74 percent of drivers surveyed strongly agree with laws or regulations prohibiting texting or emailing behind the wheel. However, more than half believe that laws governing cell phone use while driving are enforced to little or no extent.

Almost half of survey respondents were extremely likely to support technology that would prevent texting or emailing on a cell phone while driving.

At Aegis, we have just announced that our technology innovations that have become the standard for protecting corporate fleets, in FleetSafer, will be offered for young drivers and families as TeenSafer. The Sate of Iowa Department of Transport is leading the way with their partnership with Aegis to develop TEXTL8R to be made available for free to young drivers in the State of Iowa in the first half of 2014.

See the full State Farm survey results here.

 b2ap3_thumbnail_state-farm-dd-infographic.png

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