6 Mobile Apps That Could Save Your Life
When you think about being a safer driver, mobile apps are probably not the first thing that come to mind, are they? Every day, it seems we hear about another tragic accident caused by someone using their phone while they should have been watching the road.
So you might be surprised to learn that there are several great phone apps whose sole purpose is to help you be a better, safer driver. Some are particularly helpful for teen drivers, but all of them are useful for anyone seeking to be safer behind the wheel.
If you’ll be spending much time on the road this holiday season, you might want to investigate whether any of these six mobile apps could be helpful for you along the way!
Is there any feeling scarier for a parent than the first time their child sets out in the car on their own? No matter how much you trust your child, you begin imagining all sorts of terrible accidents the minute they pull out of the driveway.
Well, this app (available on Apple & Android) helps you keep track so you’re not worrying for no reason. Not only does it tell you where your teen is, but it lets you know how they’re driving, and even sends you alerts if they’re speeding. Knowing what’s happening will help you feel better, and the fact that your teen knows that you know will help encourage them to drive more safely.
Let’s face it – teenagers are far from the only people who use their cell phones while driving. Adults are just as guilty as teens are. And this app from AT&T is helpful for drivers of any age who have trouble resisting the urge to text or browse behind the wheel.
It has a few useful features: it silences sound alerts of texts, calls and e-mails (this way you won’t be distracted by every ping and ring); it sends an automated text reply that lets friends know you can’t respond because you’re driving; and it blocks you from making calls or using the web browser. As safety is always a concern, however, it never blocks you from calling 911 or a list of five accepted emergency numbers of your choosing.
Whereas Drivemode is enabled when you choose to enable it, Lifesaver automatically blocks activity when your car is moving. As with Drivemode, the driver is still able to unlock the phone to call 911 or another designated number, but parents can choose to get an alert when this happens so that they can monitor when phone use happens during driving.
Interestingly, the same company that makes LifeSaver has another app called Tag a Texter, in which you drop a pin on a crowd-sourced map every time you see a person texting while using their phone. The purpose is not to “catch” unsafe drivers, but rather to alert users to where and when the most distracted driving occurs.
The main point of this safe driving app is not to interrupt your bad phone behavior (although it does that too), but to monitor your actual, real-time driving conditions. It uses your phone’s camera to “watch” the road ahead of you and alerts you when there’s something unsafe happening.
As you’re driving the app warns you if you’re too close to the car in front of you, swerving out of your lane, or speeding. It even gives you your own driving analytics, so that you can see what you can do to become a safer driver. It’s also interesting that it allows you to easily take video or photos of what’s in front of you – this could be especially helpful in a situation like a hit and run accident where you may later need proof of what occurred.
Driving when you’re tired is dangerous, but sometimes unavoidable. This smart app helps you stay awake in a couple of ways. You can choose between two different modes which require you to periodically touch the screen or interact verbally with the voice on the app – if you fail to respond, a loud alarm will go off.
This one is a little different…instead of helping you to be a safe driver, it helps you take yourself out of the equation all together, if necessary. Although you usually plan ahead when you know you’ll be drinking, sometimes you end up having more than you planned and know not to get behind the wheel. You can use this app to dispatch someone to drive you home in your own car. That way you get home safely and don’t have to worry about retrieving your car the next morning.
No one wants to drive dangerously, but many of us make careless mistakes because we think an accident won’t happen to us. What’s great about these apps is that they prevent you from making those in-the-moment bad calls that could get you or others seriously injured.
About the Author:
As the founder of Zaid Law, a personal injury law firm in Houston, John Zaid is a passionate expert on all things related to safety. His experience with the victims of car accidents has made him determined to help his clients and readers become safer drivers. To learn more about John, visit www.Zaidlaw.com.