LIFESAVER MOBILE TECHNOLOGY OFFERING HANDS-FREE PHONE USE FOR COMMERCIAL DRIVERS WHEN THEY’RE BEHIND THE WHEEL.
The temptation to glance at a blinking or buzzing cell phone is hard to resist—even when you’re behind the wheel.
According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, nearly three out of four Canadian drivers admit to driving distracted. You are 23 times more likely to crash if you text while driving. Furthermore, from 2016 to 2018 alone, we saw increased claims linked to distracted driving.
When you put these statistics together, you get a frightening picture of the risks we all face when we’re on the road.
“Despite increased penalties and awareness on this issue, too many Canadians are still driving distracted behind the wheel. The majority of these accidents are preventable – such as hitting stationary objects, rear ending other vehicles and inattentive lane changes,” said Phil Gibson, Managing Director, Personal Insurance at Aviva Canada.
LifeSaver Mobile has developed a software solution that prevents, measures, and reduces distracted driving for people who are on the road more than anyone: commercial drivers.
As part of our partnership with Highline Beta, we chose this Silicon Valley technology company as one of three startups and are funding it as part of the Safe x Connected Cities Accelerator Program.How does LifeSaver Mobile work?
“We found that 25-50 per cent of collisions in commercial vehicles are caused by phone distraction, and that there wasn’t any technology in place to reduce or eradicate this problem. Our mission is to reduce collisions caused by distracted commercial drivers,” said Ted Chen, co-founder of LifeSaver Mobile.
The software works by using a mobile application to disable cell phone screen use when a fleet operator is driving. The application still allows for full voice control, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality. The technology can tell when a commercial vehicle is in motion and will block or discourage use of the phone screen through real-time intervention - an emergency unlock and passenger unlock feature can override it, if necessary.
“So, let’s say that a delivery truck is making its rounds, our software would be able to block visual and manual phone interaction during the drive so they keep their eyes on the road,” said Chen.
In addition to blocking screen use of the mobile device, our software uses the sensors on the phone to measure how often fleet drivers are distracted by their phones and other metrics related to driver safety. A report can be automatically pushed to drivers when they have infractions and to fleet managers to help train their drivers on how to avoid these infractions in the future
Phone distraction is one of the leading causes of collision frequency and this data can be used by insurance companies to help inform their underwriting.How are we using LifeSaver Mobile at Aviva?
Aviva is carrying out a pilot on this solution with our claims team, comprised of nearly 200-300 drivers.
Our goals are to determine whether the solution:
- Is useful in changing driver behaviour and reducing distracted driving
- Has the ability to reduce the number of claims a corporate fleet makes
- Is suitable for fleet clients as a loss control tool
We’re not the only ones excited about the possibility of making our roads safer by limiting cellphone use in vehicles. Three quarters of Canadians are supportive of a technology solution that would disable the use of smartphones when driving, according to a 2017 Pollara Insights poll.
LifeSaver Mobile’s work on bringing anti-distracted driving technology to commercial vehicles is an exciting step toward making our roads safer for every Canadian.
The content in this article is for information purposes only and is not intended to be relied upon as professional or expert advice.