Drivers who engage in risky behavior are often found engaging in other risky behaviors at the same time, according to new data released by Lytx, a provider of video telematics, analytics, and safety solutions for fleets.
For instance, drivers who eat while driving also tend to drive unbelted or follow the vehicle in front of them too closely. Lytx found that 23% of all its scored events included a driver engaging in multiple potentially risky behaviors.
The company, which has more than 100 billion miles of driving data and 100,000 risky driving events captured by video every day, released new information about commercial driving and distraction.
Other findings include:
- While 65% of all cell phone use was hands-free in 2018, up from 27% in 2016, Lytx also found a 13% increase in the overall volume of risky driving behavior involving handheld cell phones during the same timeframe.
- Lytx found a 10% increase in the overall volume of events in which drivers using hands-free devices engaged in one or more other potentially risky distractions as well, such as eating, drinking, smoking, or using another device.
- This combination of distractions magnifies risk. A multi-tasking driver engaged in multiple potentially risky distracting behaviors has a 100% increase in risk over a driver engaged in one potentially risky, distracting behavior.
- Driver cell phone use occurs most frequently at 65 mph.
In commercial vehicle fleets, distraction (related to cell phone use, eating, or general inattention) is the second leading driver-related cause of fatal truck crashes.
"Identifying the underlying causes of risky behaviors and addressing the dangers of multi-tasking are crucial first steps to training safer drivers," said Del Lisk, vice president of safety services at Lytx. "We recommend managers help their drivers understand the elevated risks around them, especially during peak times associated with distraction. Also, by advising drivers to make their calls or appointments before they start driving, managers can encourage them to avoid giving into these temptations."