P&C Industry Needs Better Data About Distracted Driving

 Tuesday, February 2, 2021

 Canadian Underwriter

There’s a fairly significant gap between what government agencies have to say about distracted driving and what data companies are able to capture, and that is playing a role in the ineffective portrayal and messaging around the seriousness of people using their phones while operating vehicles, according to a recent webinar panel.

In 2019, about one-third of all trips showed “significant phone distraction,” according to Cambridge Mobile Telematics’ (CMT) own data gathered through its apps.

In 2020, which included nine months of a global pandemic, the number of trips where the driver was distracted by their phone went up to 40%.

“That number is much higher than we see in the statistics published by the road safety community,” reported Ryan McMahon, VP of insurance and government affairs at CMT.

The U.S.-based National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported in late 2019 that the percentage of passenger vehicle drivers talking on handheld phones increased from 2.9% in 2017 to 3.2% in 2018.
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