While texting and driving is illegal and can cause serious accidents, there are some driving apps that can help actually prevent accidents. (It is important to note that no one should engage with these apps while actually driving.) In fact, distracted driving can kill and is one of the main causes of car accidents on roads in the United States. If you or a loved one suffered injuries or losses in an accident with a distracted driver and would like to find out about your legal options for recovering compensation, speak with an experienced car accident trial attorney at Tyroler Injury Law can help. Call us today for a free consultation at (651) 259-1113.
Distracted Driving Accidents
Distracted driving does not only impact car occupants but can also cause deaths among pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcycle riders. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving caused 2,841 deaths in the year 2018 alone. The figure includes 400 pedestrians and 77 bicyclists.
There can be many potential distractions while driving such as:
- Eating and drinking while driving
- Interacting with passengers in the car
- Grooming and applying make-up
- Listening to loud music
However, out of all the possible distractions, texting while driving is arguably the deadliest. Not only does texting take a driver’s eyes off the road, but it also takes their hands off the wheel and diverts their concentration away from driving. However, technology is starting to come to the rescue with several safe driving apps on the market, many of them free of charge and tailored to teen drivers and their parents. Recently, 7 safe driving apps for cellphones have proved popular for those hoping to cut down on distracted driving accidents.
LifeSaver is a free safe driving app that automatically detects and activates when a user of the app starts driving. It prevents drivers from using their phones during the drive by blocking all other phone apps. Users report that the app is easy to use and does not require any additional hardware. LifeSaver has specific features for the parents of teen drivers, such as alerting them when the teen has reached their destination. LifeSaver can also be used by employers managing a fleet of vehicles and a number of drivers.
DriveMode manages a user’s calls and messages while they are driving to ensure they use their cellphone in a safe and hands-free way. DriveMode includes voice-enabled commands and oversized controls, letting drivers focus on the road. The app silences phone calls and texts once a driver’s speed exceeds 15mph. DriveMode also features some additional functionalities for the parents of teenage drivers, including getting notified when the teen turns off the app. DriveMode is free to use.
The makers of DriveSafe.ly claim that the app is the solution to texting while driving. DriveSafe.ly reads text messages and emails out loud, turning them into voice messages, and responds with an automatic message, so drivers do not have to touch the mobile phone. The app is also free for users.
TextDrive is also a free app that sends text responses to those who call or text a user’s phone while the user is driving. It works much like an autoresponder, in a similar way to DriveSafe.ly. Users can customize reply messages or use voice commands to reply.
DriveSmart comes in a free basic version and a paid version with additional features. The app can be used for directing calls to voicemail, silence texts, and send automatic responses. Parents of teen drivers can set up an alert to be notified when their teen disables the app while driving. The app also provides an incentive to drive safely as teens can earn “smart coins” for safe driving.
TrueMotion is yet another free app aimed at teens and their families. The app monitors and tracks a user’s driving and encourages them to change unsafe driving behaviors. TrueMotion also includes an incentive for drivers who can earn points and take part in giveaways. TrueMotion has the added functionality of tracking an entire family’s vehicles, including location and driving behavior.
iOnRoad can monitor a car’s position and uses the phone’s camera to continuously monitor hazards and vehicles on the road. The app alerts drivers with audio and visual warnings when it perceives a hazard or a potential collision. iOnRoad can also be used for blocking calls and text messages, much like the other apps.
The Potential Downside of Safe Driving Apps
While these safe driving apps are useful, there are also some potential downsides. According to the NHTSA, even hands-free cell phone use while driving can have a detrimental impact on driver performance. The NHTSA further states that hands-free devices, while preferable to hand-held devices, are not risk-free.
However, in the eyes of the law, hands-free phone use is generally permitted at this time, while there are laws banning texting and driving. This means that hands-free navigation apps and safe driving apps remain permitted although they arguably provide cognitive and visual distractions. It is perhaps safe to say that there will be more, and better, driving apps with added functionality in the future, helping to keep us safe with our eyes on the road and hands on the steering wheel.
Distracted Driving Causes Accidents and Injuries
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), teen drivers are particularly prone to experiencing accidents due to texting and driving. However, distracted driving is generally one of the top causes of accidents in this country and concerns drivers of all ages.
If you experienced an accident due to a distracted driver and suffered injuries, you could be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, income loss, pain and suffering, and other damages. However, distracted driving can be challenging to prove. Having a seasoned personal injury lawyer by your side can give you peace of mind. An attorney can also help you with all the practical aspects of pursuing adequate compensation such as dealing with insurance companies and filing a lawsuit.
Contact Tyroler Injury Law Now for Help
Tyroler Injury Law is here to help accident victims get what they deserve. Do not wait with contacting us as there are general time limits to file personal injury claims in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Missing the filing deadline could potentially prevent you from being able to seek justice and compensation.
We have a track record of helping car accident victims get justice. Call Tyroler Injury Law now for a free, no-obligation case review: (651) 259-1113.