In 2014 there were one and a quarter billion cars on the road, and by 2035 this number is expected to almost double to two billion. Despite this mind-boggling amount of traffic, we still don’t seem to pay much attention when we’re driving. In 2011 it was estimated that 660,000 Americans use their phone while driving at any given moment, and this number hasn’t declined since, not to mention the fact that (at least) 80% of drivers now own a smartphone, making it even harder for us to concentrate on the road.
As we know, a lot of things have changed since 2011, but phone usage is definitely not one of them – if anything, the multitude of social networks, fitness apps, performing pets and fail videos has simply shifted our concentration into a more virtual world, and away from the real screen in front of the steering wheel.
As if things could not get any worse, stats from the FMCSA show that last year over 90,000 large trucks were involved in fatal or injury crashes, which suggests that this is a more serious matter than simply tweeting in a traffic jam. A crash or even a misdemeanor on the job could potentially lose an employee their job and ruin a company’s reputation, so shoddy driving skills cause much more collateral damage than just bent fenders.
This clearly does not bode well, and given that drink and speed related accidents have not decreased in the last decade, our distracted driving seems to be a problem that will not fix itself. Our gadgets are an obvious cause of distraction, but the wave of new technology that is sweeping us through the decade brings a silicon lining to this age-old cloud.
iDrive are a vehicle tracking company that offer a truly ingenious solution to this global problem of traffic accidents. The iDrive X2 records two HD videos at once, one in front and one behind, and automatically saves the recordings before and after it is triggered by hard braking, aggressive driving or even an open door, giving a perfect insight into the cause of a crash, or just who is a terrible driver.
Designed primarily for fleet monitoring, this gives bosses a clear picture of how their drivers are doing, and as iDrive CEO Sean O’Neil states, ‘90.3% of crashes in the USA are due to human error’, which when we’re talking about eighteen wheelers is quite terrifying. But far from just pointing the finger after a crash, ‘monitoring a driver means unsafe habits can be corrected before an incident occurs,’ potentially saving lives, jobs, and unneeded expense, and by mixing video with next-gen GPS the iDrive solution becomes formidable.
When you think of GPS, a picture of a 4×4 guided into a lake might spring into mind, or a shrill robotic voice shouting at you to do a U-turn across three lanes of traffic, but this technology has learned from its mistakes, taken the bad press on board, and has come out the other side smelling of roses and a lot more than just navigation.
Partnered with PodM2M’s SIM cards, the iDrive modules can stream data from anywhere in the world, providing real time footage and driving statistics back to HQ, using our ‘no single point of failure’ technology to guarantee the strongest signal available. Not only that, but iDrive’s Global Center can be synced to any mobile device so you don’t even have to be in the office to check how a driver is doing.
There is now more of every type of vehicle on the road than ever before, with no signs of slowing down, and it seems that crashes will never be a thing of the past. But if we can use technology to help us, instead of as a handy distraction on a monotonous commute or a 15 hour trucking route, maybe we can stop enough of the worst accidents before they happen, and even make the roads a more pleasant place to be in general.