Ending Distracted Driving with data analytics and smartphone telematics
Chinese follows below
In recent years, traffic accidents caused by drivers distracted by their smartphones have become all too common. Statistically, using your smartphone while driving makes you 23 times more likely to cause a car accident, while researchers in the UK have discovered that using your phone while driving decreases reaction times by 35%. Comparatively, driving under the influence of alcohol and marijuana decrease reaction times by just 12% and 21% respectively. By these numbers, it is therefore unsurprising that distracted driving has already replaced drunk driving and driving while high as the greatest cause of death in traffic accidents.
Under the Road Traffic Safety Law of the People’s Republic of China, phone usage while driving has been classified as behavior that threatens road safety. Cities like Shanghai and Hangzhou have imposed measures to prevent distracted driving, such as installing high-definition CCTV and increasing police presence on their roads. However, in spite of the level of danger that this behavior poses, offenders continue to use their phones on the road, due to the difficulty of collecting evidence and enforcing the law, as well as the relatively low cost to offenders when proven guilty.
In order to tackle this issue, OKChexian released OKDrive, which enables better collection of data on dangerous driving. OKDrive is China’s first nationally patented smartphone telematics technology; it does not require any hardware, and it automatically tracks your driving behavior through GPS and other sensors already built into your smartphone.
OKDrive tracks every stage of your journey, flagging not only phone usage, but also rapid accelerations, sharp turns, sudden lane changes, bumps, speeding, and insufficient decelerations. OKDrive can also give a breakdown of these statistics for each trip: for example, it can calculate total phone usage, average phone usage across all trips, and variation in frequency of phone usage across areas with different speed limits.
Through the collection of data on driving behavior, OKDrive’s SDK can help people become better drivers by helping them to develop better driving habits. At the same time, it can provide transport authorities with more comprehensive, precise, and actionable data, particularly on things like drivers’ phone usage.
From a broader perspective, the OKDrive’s collection of driving data and the statistically-based system of rewards and penalties promotes greater awareness of safe driving. This allows drivers to work on their own driving habits, and creates safer roads for everyone.