Distracted driving is when you operate a vehicle, but are paying attention to something else besides the road. This term is mostly applied to when we use our phones, although it can include horsing around, eating, applying makeup, or other bad habits.

Using a smartphone while driving can cause a potentially deadly accident. Sadly, this is becoming a trend in this country and is on the rise. New data reveals that the leading cause of death among teenagers is texting while driving.

Every parent’s nightmare is getting that phone call from the sheriff’s office saying their child has been involved in a car accident. Fortunately, an app is now on the market that can make it less likely to get that dreaded call.

The Canary app is designed to help your child stay safe on the road by:

  • tracking your teen driver’s location and speed;
  • alerting you if they have unlocked their phone;
  • allowing you to set maximum speed limits and receive notification when your teen exceeds them;
  • viewing your teen’s location;
  • seeing where everyone in the family is with the family map;
  • setting a perimeter on the map that the teen driver is supposed to stay within;
  • sending immediate alerts and location info in the event of an emergency; and
  • notifying you of severe weather near your child so you can monitor driving conditions.

Not only is the app loaded with great features, but it’s easy to use. The analytics provided come in simple charts, graphs, and detailed lists. There are also customizable settings that give you easy access to driving summary reports.

Why It’s Important

The data that the Canary app provides essentially gives parents some control over their child’s driving patterns. This data on your child’s driving tendencies – rather than guessing or asking them to self-report – provides a great opportunity to have an ongoing discussion about unsafe driving with your teen.

Believe it or not, talking with teens about driving behavior is proven to help them develop good driving habits. A recent Parent & Teen Safe Driving Survey by Travelers Insurance Company shows teens who feel their parents are positive role models as drivers are half as likely to be in a car accident. Furthermore, the survey found that an overwhelming 96% of teens had discussions with their parents about safe driving.

In all, it’s going to take a lot more than a promise or quick discussion to get all drivers, including teens, to stop speeding and using phones while behind the wheel. Technologies that provide crucial data, such as this Canary app, are powerful tools that can help alter behavior.

Teens’ Reactions

The app is not only helpful for parents, but can be eye-opening to teens who may not realize exactly how much they are using the phone while driving. Coming face-to-face with reports on how often they are unlocking their phone to use it, or seeing how fast they are really going, can go far in convincing them to adopt safer driving habits.

While some teens may at first see the app as a way for them to get in trouble with Mom and Dad, it’s important to frame the app around the idea of safety.

Essentially, it’s important to emphasize that the purpose of the app is not about keeping tabs on your teen – who no doubt is yearning for freedom. The app is about keeping your kids from hurting themselves and others, while establishing good driving habits that last a lifetime.

Keeping You & Your Family Safe on the Road

Pittman Dutton & Hellums is a Birmingham law firm that focuses on representing victims of automobile and trucking accidents. We are passionate about informing the public about tools that can help keep our roadways safer. Becoming injured in a vehicle collision is a terrible situation that nobody wants. If you do find yourself the victim of an accident, please reach out to our firm today.

Lee Pittman

About 

Lee Pittman is one of the founding partners of Pittman, Dutton & Hellums, P.C. Learn more about his background and featured practice areas here.

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