For many people, technology has become an addiction, which is why they still choose to text while driving. A survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that 31 percent of U.S. drivers aged 18-64 had sent or looked at a text message or email while driving in the 30 days before the survey. However, drivers can help themselves pay more attention to the road by downloading an app that either blocks phone notifications or offers incentives for not using a phone while driving.
Stop Distracted Driving With These Top Apps
When a person hears the notification ping of a text message, call, or an email, his brain releases dopamine—a chemical that causes a feeling of excitement and reward. If the driver looks at the message, and it’s something positive, the brain receives more dopamine. It’s the same type of feeling or pleasure a person can get from drugs, sex, and eating. Because these feelings can be addictive, drivers find it harder to resist reaching for their phone when it pings. Because of this and the growing number of accidents on the road due to distracted driving, app developers saw an opportunity to help drivers stop using phones when they’re behind the wheel. Here is a brief look at some of these apps:
- AT&T DriveMode. This app silences notifications when a car is moving more than 15 mph. In addition, the free app notifies parents if their child turns off the app.
- Sprint’s Drive First. This app can sense when the car is in motion and locks a cell phone automatically. Anyone who downloads this app can select three “VIP” contacts, for which notifications will get through in case of emergencies. Drive First is free for any Sprint subscriber.
- LifeSaver. This app also automatically locks the phone when it detects driving. The app also provides the ability to make emergency calls and allows a passenger user. It’s free in the Apple App Store.
- DriveOff. This app begins working in the background to block calls, texts, emails, and apps when a car travels 10 mph or over. In the Android store, this app is free.
- Cellcontrol. This app is designed with parents in mind. Available on iOS and Android, Cellcontrol works with a device placed under the dashboard. When the car is in motion, the device blocks notifications and even the camera app. If Cellcontrol is disabled or uninstalled, parents receive a notification,
- Drivesafe.ly. This app doesn’t completely block notifications. Instead, it reads your texts to you and even allows for pre-made or voice responses. Although it’s not free, it can promote safer driving.
- SafeDrive. This app works by providing you with points-based incentives for using the app while driving. Open the app, drive over 6 mph, and you’ll receive points you can use at certain stores for discounts. You earn more points based on safe driving speed, time spent in traffic, and distance traveled.
- Live2Txt. This app is one that you manually engage. When you get in the car, turn on the app, and it will block your calls, texts, and other notifications. The app will also reply to texts you get, letting the sender know you’re driving and will get back to them soon.
- Focus. This app keeps you from texting while walking, but it works for driving, too. Focus doesn’t block any pings, but it gives you verbal reminders to focus on driving. This free app is aimed at creating better habits, not just locking the phone.
- TextNoMore. This app enables the driver to select an estimated driving time, and the app locks the phone and blocks all notifications during that timeline. Like SafeDrive, TextNoMore offers discounts at participating stores for incentives, but it also allows you to receive calls on a hands-free device.
We Can Help
Despite education efforts, many people will still use their phones while driving. If you’re the victim of a distracted driving accident, we are here to answer any questions you may have and you can visit this site for further information. At Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum, we have decades of experience recovering fair compensation for car accident victims. If you’re ready to discuss your case with a lawyer, call us at 888-591-9976.