Distracted Driving Facts You Need To Know

Managing a fleet not only means taking care of the vehicles, but those who drive them too. Safety is an important element of fleet management, and it’s vital that policies are put in place to protect your drivers.

In 2020, 3,142 people died from distracted driving. These deaths could have been prevented, had people taken more care while driving. 

Understanding the facts about distracted driving can help you share information with your teams and help them become better, safer drivers. Here are the distracted driving facts you need to know.

Distracted driving deaths happen every day

Nine people are killed as a result of distracted driving every day. Distracted driving is described as ‘doing another activity that takes the driver’s attention away from driving.’ This not only puts drivers at risk, but passengers, other vehicles and pedestrians, cyclists, and animals too.

1 in 5 of those involved were not in vehicles

Of the deaths caused by distracted driving, 1 in 5 of the victims were not in vehicles. This means they were either pedestrians or cyclists. Making the decision to take your eyes off the road, even for a couple of seconds, can have major implications for drivers and others.

Drivers are aware of distracted driving habits but continue to display them

AAA recently conducted a survey titled Distracted Driving, which looked at driving habits and showed some worrying statistics about distracted drivers.

While most drivers recognize behaviors like texting and calling while driving as risky and dangerous, individuals continue to display these behaviors while driving. 51% admitted to taking a call while driving, while 45% admit to receiving or sending a text message. 

Drivers who display these behaviors do so regularly, meaning they’re distracted at least once a day. According to insurer Nationwide, the average driver is distracted 13 times a day.

Phone use is responsible for the most common distracted driving behaviors

Distracted driving can include a number of behaviors, including eating and drinking while driving, but it’s phone use that is the biggest culprit. While texting and calling are some of the main behaviors, other distracted behaviors involving phones include:

  • Posting on social media apps
  • Video calls
  • Playing games
  • Watching video

Friday is the most common day for distracted driving

According to Nationwide, distracted driving increases on Fridays, but decreases on Tuesdays. Evenings are also more likely to feature distractions, with more distractions happening from 4 pm to 7 pm than at other periods during the day.

Different states have different laws on the use of phones in vehicles

Different states have different laws around the use of phones in vehicles in a bid to stop distracted driving. Texting and driving are banned from all states in the US, except for Wyoming and Montana. Others have laws banning handheld phones while driving. 

36 states have a complete ban on phone use in vehicles for novice drivers, while bus drivers are also prohibited from using phones in 23 states.

Preventing distracted driving

Distracted driving can have serious consequences for drivers and others, leading to accidents that can cause damage to vehicles and property, injury, and death. For those caught distracted driving, especially when it leads to an accident, insurance premiums can rise significantly – causing problems for fleet managers and businesses.

It’s important to prevent dangerous driving as much as possible. Having policies and procedures in place for dealing with distracted driving can encourage safer behavior and provide stricter agreements for use of fleet vehicles. 

Vestige can help you monitor the safety of your drivers using AI cameras, driver alerts, GPS tracking, and more. To find out more about our solutions, contact us today and we’ll be happy to work with you to find effective fleet and safety solutions for your business.

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