James V. Murray
Cellphones Linked To Increase Number Of Car Accidents In Mobile Workforce
In the technologically advanced era we live in, cell phones are used on a non-stop basis. While constant access to the Internet and others is beneficial in several ways, it can be deadly if it isn't paused to drive a vehicle. With distracted driving already contributing to the astounding 6 million car accidents that occur in the U.S. each year, one company found that cell phones have done nothing but add to those incidents -- especially for mobile workers.
Motus, a vehicle management and reimbursement platform, recently linked the increase in smartphone ownership across the ever-growing mobile workforce to a rise in car accident rates. Their "2018 Distracted Driving Report" revealed the specifics: the number of people in the mobile workforce who own a smartphone increased from 55% in 2013 to 77% in 2017. Unsurprisingly, the number of car accidents escalated from 5.7 million to 6.4 million -- an astounding 12.3%.
"Distractions such as eating, handling navigation or music controls, and phone calls have been pulling drivers' focus from the road for years," said Ken Robinson, market research analyst for Motus. "However, we've discovered a clear correlation between increased smartphone ownership across the mobile workforce and the number of total accidents over the last five years."
Since mobile workers drive more frequently than the average American, Motus estimated a shocking statistics: that the average mobile worker travels about 1,200 distracted miles every year. Car accidents caused as a result of this driver equates to exorbitant costs for the employer; from medical fees and property damage, not to mention the fact that some people may want to hire a personal injury lawyer or attorney, companies lose out big time -- and that's not counting the lost work days and slowed productivity when the worker returns.
"Distracted driving is a big problem on today's roads, but it doesn't have to stay that way," said Craig Powell, CEO of Motus. "Businesses can take steps to improve the safety of their mobile workforce by helping mobile workers develop the skills they need to improve their driving skills and avoid risky behaviors."
Basically, if you find yourself behind the wheel of a car, don't get cocky: you really can't drive safely and have a text conversation with your friend. When you push the envelope, you increase your chances or injuring yourself or someone else, and finding yourself at the wrong end of a personal injury claim.