How new tech may prevent distracted driving

Drivers in Missouri are likely aware of the perennial danger that distractions pose. The organization Zendrive, after an analysis of 100 billion roadway miles, released a study showing that 60 percent of drivers use their phones while behind the wheel at least once a day. About 69 million drivers use their phones every day; this is a far cry from current government data, which states that every day there are 660,000 distracted drivers.

Not only cellphones but also GPS and infotainment systems create a risk, and that risk is especially high for commercial truck drivers. This is why several companies are producing technology to counteract technology. Omnitracs, a fleet management systems company, has a Driving Center tool for collecting and analyzing commercial truck driver data; a new module for this web-based tool can detect fatigue and distraction to predict when drivers are at a high risk for an accident.

Zendrive has also been predicting accidents for fleets and insurers by reviewing smartphone data. Advances in machine learning are making the predictions more accurate than ever. Of course, the most important thing is for drivers to listen to the warnings that new technology provides them with and address issues like lack of sleep as well as any stressors that might prompt them to engage in aggressive and unsafe driving.

Truckers are often to blame for any truck collisions that they cause through distracted driving. Even if they were simply letting their minds wander, they could be guilty of negligence. Victims, for their part, might choose to hire a lawyer to file a third-party insurance claim. A lawyer may have the case investigated and have experts gather important evidence like the police reports and the trucker's work log. The lawyer may be able to negotiate for a settlement with the fleet's own legal representatives or proceed to litigation.

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