How to prevent distracted driving with technology

Updated June 28, 2024  |   Published April 18, 2023

Earlier this month, we published a blog about preventing distracted driving, in which we discussed methods such as removing technology. Living in a world full of cutting-edge technology, sometimes it’s hard to put it down. Today, we wanted to discuss changing the script; let’s see how you can prevent distracted driving with technology.


Cell Phone Blocking Technology

Cell phone blocking technology is most often offered in the form of an app for smartphones. Some wireless companies and other app developers specialize in this kind of product. Some of the most basic cell phone blocking technologies prevents calls or texts from showing up on your phone screen while your vehicle is in motion. For instance, Apple has a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” feature natively built into your iPhone. Higher-end systems are able to block audio features, as well as tracking speed and sudden stops. Many send text or email reports of a user’s driving history to the driver, or to someone else. This could be helpful for parents of teenage drivers to help hold them accountable.


Why is Cell Phone Blocking Technology Necessary to Prevent Distracted Driving?

Many drivers continue to use their cell phone, even though there is a risk of a car accident, which they are aware of. Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed by the National Safety Council said that they felt they were at risk because another driver was distracted by technology. Yet this same group of people had a “not me” attitude, as only twenty-five percent said that their own distraction on the road was putting others at risk. The common belief among people is that they believe they are better drivers than those around them.


How Does It Prevent Distracted Driving?

Cell phone blocking apps and devices can be activated in a variety of different ways; adding a service to a wireless plan, downloading an app onto your phone (many of which are free!) or installing a device in your vehicle to put a “virtual barrier” around the driver. Almost all of these products have online dashboards which allow customers to set up accounts and configure settings.


if you have a cell-phone blocking technology connected to your phone, you will still be able to contact 911 in the case of an emergency. There are override features built into these programs.


Recommendations When Looking for Cell Phone Blocking Technology

  1. Safety options: Systems with the most safety benefit block all handheld and hands-free phone use. The best systems block essentially all functions of a phone, minus emergency override to call 911 in case of an emergency.
  2. Battery life: Be sure cell phone blockers won’t leave your smartphone drained.
  3. Compatibility: Nearly all products work with Android devices, but some may not work with Apple devices. Do your homework before purchasing a product for for the sake of compatibility.
  4. Online dashboard: Is there an online dashboard that comes with the app/product? Is it easy to use and easy to comprehend the information?
  5. Default settings: Can you adjust settings to make them stronger? Will the app/product keep your phone disabled while you’re still in the car but aren’t moving?



What Car Manufacturers Are Doing to Prevent Distracted Driving

There are many ways that aim to prevent distracted driving in your household. Car manufacturers also recognize the dangers of it, and are beginning to implement technology features in their newer models of cars to be able to help drivers to drive more safely on the road.

Driver monitoring systems:

This is one of the most recent features to hit the automobile market. Vehicle manufacturers have placed sensors and cameras inside cars to detect instances of driver distraction or drowsiness. Some even use facial recognition technology to go as far as to track your head and eye movements to ensure you’re looking straight ahead. If the sensors notice you’re distracted, the automobile alerts you to pay more attention to the road. It’s not a widespread technology yet, but it seems as though more and more manufacturers are adopting this technology each year.

Advanced Cruise Control Systems:

Advanced cruise control systems allow your car to sense when you may be feeling drowsy behind the wheel. Some manufacturers have technology that locks your system and corrects your vehicle to stay in the lane, while other manufacturers have technology that actually recommends places for you to stop and take a break from driving.

Lane Departure Warnings:

Modern-day cars often have lane departure warning systems. These systems rely on sensors to note the car’s position in the lane. A system warns the driver if it recognizes the car crossing lane lines. The functionality differs by vehicle. Most car alerts include pop-up notifications on gauge cluster displays, instrument cluster lights, or even a rumble in your car seat.

Apple Car Play and Android Auto:

Apple Car Play and Android Auto offer reliable voice control systems that can use navigation apps, read and reply to texts, and enable you to converse hands-free. That way, you can keep your eyes on the road.

Lane Keeping Assist:

Lane-keeping assist helps to recenter the car by applying light correction via the steering wheel. This system can detect danger and even issues a lane departure warning. But this is not considered self-driving by auto companies or regulators, due to it being a correction system, not an automation system.

Locking Out Controls:

These controls disable certain features on your smartphone or car screen, depending on whether your vehicle is in motion. Some car manufacturers still use it today, though the technology is a bit outdated.

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