Modern technology makes life easier and safer in many ways, but using cell phones when driving is definitely not one of them. Distracted driving due to inappropriate cell phone usage has become a leading cause of auto accidents, especially when texting while driving. In fact, numerous studies have shown texting and driving to be even more dangerous than drunk driving.
Fortunately, there are many good – and free – apps for safe driving that can help prevent distracted driving for yourself, a family member or a friend. If you or someone you love has a habit of driving while distracted, try one of these safe driving apps to encourage and support safer driving.
This popular safe driving app combines GPS monitoring with a rewards system to help drivers eliminate distracted driving habits. It works by preventing drivers from using their cell phones while driving, and enables parents to track and reward safe driving habits for their teen children. Lifesaver blocks all cell phone apps. It notifies family or friends when you reach your destination. And it doesn’t require any new hardware to use.
This app addresses a major cause of distracted driving accidents – reading text messages while behind the wheel. It works by turning text messages into audio messages, allowing drivers to keep their eyes on the road at all times. After delivering the audio message, Drive Safe.ly sends a text message indicating the driver can’t answer right away. Designed to let you stay connected while operating hands-free, the app for safe driving won’t slow down your phone or drain the battery.
One of the more innovative safe driving apps, iOnRoad uses augmented reality to “see” other cars on the road. It then combines GPS, accelerometer and smartphone camera data to measure the distance between you and the car in front of you. If you get too close, it flashes a warning on your cell phone screen along with an audio alert. iOnRoad can also block calls, emails and text messages. To date, the app’s augmented driving, collision warning and video recording features have led to nearly a million downloads.
Designed to give parents a complete picture of their family’s driving safety, this app not only monitors and tracks risky driving behaviors, it also offers recommendations for improving them. For example, it measures the amount of time you exceed the speed limit, the number of hard-braking incidents on each trip, and other unsafe driving habits. According to their web site, just having TrueMotion Family reduces distracted driving by 75%. Like some other safe driving apps, True Motion Family allows drivers to earn “safety” points that can be redeemed to win cash and prizes.
5. Drive Smart
This popular app has a motto that all drivers would do well to heed: no distractions, no excuses. Using Drive Smart allows you to direct incoming calls to voicemail, mute incoming texts, and send an automatic response that you are unavailable at the moment. A paid version of the app, called Drive Smart Plus, automatically turns on the program by detecting when your vehicle is moving. Passengers can override the drive mode on their cell phones, and parents can be notified when the override is used. The company also sponsors a contest for teenagers to submit a 30- to 60-second digital short encouraging their peers to drive more safely, with the winner taking home $10,000!
These apps for safe driving are all available for free, so download one today and start driving safer!