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Triple-I Blog | Mobile phone bans reduce accidents; Telematics can help reduce distracted driving

Max Dorfman, Analysis Author, Triple-I

State bans on cellphone use while driving correlate with lower accident costs, according to the latest analysis from the Insurance Institute for Excessive Safety (IIHS). Nevertheless, the overall results were mixed across the many states studied, with entirely different legal language, levels of enforcement, and severity of penalties, offering feasible explanations for the different results.

The study found crash rate adjustments in California, Oregon and Washington after laws to prevent phone calls and texts while driving were enacted in 2017, with the study looking at overall figures from 2015 to 2019. These numbers were in comparison with management. States of Idaho and Colorado.

In particular, the study found:

  • A 7.6% reduction in the price of all-severity monthly rear-end collisions against charges in the Leading States;
  • Legislative adjustments in Oregon and Washington had been linked to large cuts of 8.8pc and 10.9pc, respectively;
  • California has not seen changes in all-severity rear crash rates or with crashes related to the enhanced regulations.

Nevertheless, state governments face a number of obstacles in their efforts to prevent accidents caused by cell phone use.

“Expertise travels much faster than legal guidelines,” said Ian Reagan, senior research fellow at the IIHS. “Our findings suggest that different states could benefit from adopting broader legal guidelines regarding cell phone use while driving, but further analysis is needed to find the mix of language and penalties that is most practical.”

Distracted driving remains a major concern

Distracted driving remains a big inconvenience on the country’s roads. Indeed, distracted driving increased by more than 30% from February 2020 to February 2022, largely due to changes in driving habits spurred by the coronavirus pandemic, according to analysis by telematics service provider Cambridge Cellular. Telematics.

The Governors Freeway Security Affiliation (GHSA) reported that more than 3,100 people died in distraction-related crashes in 2020, with approximately 400,000 people injured each year in such crashes. The true numbers, according to the study, are likely increased due to under-reporting. The report also found that cell dialing, cell text content, and cell navigation were among the most prevalent and risky behaviors.

Telematics will help

Telematics, which uses cellular expertise to track driver behavior and provide monetary incentives to drive less and infrequently and more carefully, will help reduce dangerous driving. The more customers respond positively to motivation, the less they pay for their insurance coverage.

Insurance Coverage Analysis Council Analysis – like Triple-I, a non-profit affiliate of the Institutes, focused on this real concern, learning the public concept and using telematics. The study found that 45% of drivers surveyed said they made significant safety-related changes to the way they drive after collaborating on a telematics program. Another 35% mentioned making small adjustments to the way they drive.

During the pandemic, the consolation of insurance customers with the idea of ​​letting their driving be monitored in the trade for a higher premium seemed to improve. In May 2019, mobility news and analytics agency Arity surveyed 875 licensed drivers over the age of 18 to find out how much they might have their premiums adjusted based on telematics variables. Between 30 and 40% mentioned that they could be both very or extraordinarily comfortable sharing this knowledge. In May 2020, they again conducted the survey with over 1,000 licensed drivers.

“This time,” Arity said, “about 50% of drivers were happy with their insurance pricing based on how many miles they were driving, where they were driving, and what time they were driving. , in addition to being distracted, driving and rushing.