It is no secret that cell-phone use while driving is a growing problem. What people admit to doing behind the wheel, however, is totally underreported. Most of the numbers you see out there are based on surveys of drivers, which only account for what drivers themselves report doing or seeing. The truth is distracted driving is underreported and we are out to prove just how much.
Each year the AAA foundation conducts a survey – their annual traffic safety index. The survey shows that 77.4% of drivers say distracted driving is a very serious threat to safety, and 80.6% say it is completely unacceptable; however, only 42.3% have admitted to reading a text or email while driving in a 30 day period.
At TrueMotion, we’ve built technology that allows us to gain insight into actual driving behavior so that people can improve risky behavior. Examining smartphone data collected from thousands of trips, we see that these numbers are much higher than previously reported. For instance we now know that 85% of drivers are actually using the the phone while driving, compared to the 42.3% that is self-reported.
Our data also shows that drivers are texting or using an app 16% of the time during their commute. In other words 9.6 seconds of every minute driving in the car a person is on the phone.
Now let’s scale this back a bit and think about this on a national average … there are 212 million licensed drivers in the US, the average person commutes 46 mins each day. With 80% of American adults now owning a smartphone and 16% of their drive time distracted that means that drivers are distracted by their phone for almost 20.8 million hours EVERY day.
That’s incomprehensible – 20.8 million hours of distracted driving across the US – daily!
We examined to matter a little further to diagnose what’s causing all the distraction. As such we learned that the top 5 most popular apps (in order) are Facebook, Google Chrome, Google Search, MMS Messenger and Google Maps.
This data is just scratching the surface for us. We hope to shed more light on the growing matter of distracted driving and what it means to be connected as a driver. At TrueMotion we believe we can impact these statistics and help people become safer drivers and make roads safer as well.
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