Would You Drive Safer If A GPS Tracker Was Watching?

Do The Right Thing Even When Nobody Is Watching

Driving a vehicle according to the rules of the road, following state, federal laws and posted guidelines should be automatic.  One would think that doing the right thing, even when nobody is watching is a sign of integrity and personal responsibility, even when it comes to safe driving. The problem is that there are people on the road every day that fail to acknowledge safety guidelines and choose to push limits. Things like driving too fast for weather conditions, speeding in general, impaired driving, tailgating, heaving braking or changing lanes quickly or are risky behaviors. Risky behaviors lead to car accidents.  As a result, technology continues to improve to protect the innocent.

In this case, a GPS unit you have approved or are aware of, is attached to your car. Sometimes referred to as “telematics,” most people call it a “monitoring device,” or “tracking device” type of GPS tracking. The devices come in small external units that plug into your vehicles onboard diagnostics port. The data is then recorded, measured, and relayed to a designated source. The driving habits measured include not just mileage, but also how quickly you accelerate, brake, how fast you are driving, and the smoothness of your drive in general.

In the world we drive today, someone is almost always watching; a traffic camera, a pedestrian, another driver, etc. Maybe this thought doesn’t phase some drivers. But, it’s a fair question…”would some people drive safer if a GPS tracker was watching and recording?”  If all drivers were required to install these types of devices, could it prevent auto accidents?

Car Insurance Companies Using GPS Tracking

Commercial drivers may be more familiar with GPS tracking than the rest of us as they are sometimes required to use these devices to prevent truck accidents. Some companies such as Allstate, Progressive, Safeco, State Farm, and Nationwide have been known to offer money-saving incentives on regular auto insurance policies as well. By agreeing to the temporary placement of GPS tracking units on your vehicles, the insurance company can gain access to your driving habits. The information benefits the insurance company because it can justify charging more or less for insurance premiums. Insured drivers who agree to this kind of tracking could benefit from a small discount if the results come back positive. On the other hand, if the data isn’t positive, the effort could backfire. For some, it may feel strange to have the insurance company watching and recording them. Others don’t seem to be bothered by it sometimes even forget that it’s there.

At Action Law Offices, we often talk about fighting insurance companies in personal injury cases. Insurance companies are in the business to make money. They encourage GPS tracking because in the end, it benefits them the most. Companies like this don’t intend to pay fair compensation for the wrongly injured, and they would love to secretly track your every move… if they could.  As of now, the GPS tracking programs insurance companies use is voluntary. Although they use it for a purpose of their own, it may also have some additional life-saving benefits.

GPS Tracking For Teens
According to the CDC, the number one cause of death for teens 12-19 years of age is accidents. Motor vehicle accidents are the leading type of accident to claim teen lives, accounting for a third of all deaths. These are statistics are terrifying. The ability for parents to receive driving reports for their teen drivers becomes even more appealing after hearing these statistics. Many pro-active parents have started using GPS tracking devices on the vehicles of their teen drivers. This could do a couple of things: If it’s true that GPS tracking devices makes one more aware of their driving habits, then this could be a deterrent for reckless or distracted driving.  Subsequently, it provides a record of the physical where-about to know where your child is at all times. Who would be against this idea if it was managed by the parents and could potentially save the life of a teen driver?

Could GPS devices indirectly improve the driving habits of all drivers? There are many pros and cons arguments for GPS tracking devices that are on-going. As of now, they are purely optional, and can be purchased in many Wisconsin area big-box stores. Several highly rated units with premium features have also been found on Amazon.

Action Law Offices

Action Law Offices is a reputable personal injury law firm in the Metro-Milwaukee area. We are local bankruptcy attorneys with a long track record of success representing those who have been wrongly injured in accidents. Although we use many forms of data in personal injury cases, this article is not intended for legal advice or representation. If you or a family member has been hurt in an accident, please fill out this safe & secure online form to request a free case evaluation with an accident attorney at one of our offices.

DISCLAIMER: Blogs and articles cover very basic accident and injury topics for education and awareness such as statistics, Wisconsin Laws, injury areas, compensation and injury victim rights. Information not intended for legal advice; consult with an attorney directly.