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by Michael Harbron on Apr 14, 2021

The impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the driving capabilities of drivers across the country reveals some surprising revelations. A new study that looked at 6.1 billion miles driven by people who took Root Insurance’s test drive found that on average, people in the U.S.A used their phones once every five and a half miles in 2020. Another consumer survey of over 1800 drivers showed that over half (54%) of people who drive following a video chat reported having trouble concentrating on the road.

What Do These Numbers Mean?

During 2020, home life blended into work life and vice versa for many working Americans because of the coronavirus. COVID-19 has clearly created new challenges and distractions for people, including drivers who get behind the wheel after virtual meetings. A year ago, many people who had to stay home during quarantines turned to their cell phones to stay connected.

In fact, almost 70% of Americans now report that they use their phones more often to multitask – especially millennials and members of the Gen Z generation. This need for constant connectivity extends to our cars. Of people surveyed who drive with a mobile device, 62% admit that the notification sound of a text or call tempts them to check their phones. The survey shows that 64% of American drivers do check their phones while driving, and this includes those with Phoenix auto insurance, Scottsdale auto insurance, and everyone else, too.

If that isn’t alarming enough, in addition to almost two-thirds of drivers checking their phones while driving, the frequency with which they check while behind the wheel is increasing. In 2019, 36% of drivers checked their phones within 30 minutes of receiving a notification while driving. In 2021, that number has risen to 53%. As for people actually checking their phones in the middle of driving, in 2019, 58% of survey respondents admitted to doing so. In 2021, 64% of respondents are guilty of it.

How This Can Affect Phoenix Auto Insurance Rates

 It’s nothing new to say that when drivers are distracted, the risk of getting into an auto accident increases. Cellular phones and mobile devices are now some of the biggest causes of distractions, so it makes sense to say that this technology is causing more accidents on the road. Among survey respondents who said that they check their phones while driving, a whopping 93% of them also admit that doing so impacts how they drive!

States with strict laws regarding handheld phone use while driving have significantly fewer instances of distracted driving. Seventy-five percent of those states fall below the national baseline for distracted driving. As the incidence of auto accidents increases in any area, auto insurance companies are having to pay out more money to cover insured expenses. This will trigger an increase in everyone’s premiums that they pay in order to cover those increased costs that companies pay.

The bottom line is that as people are more connected to their mobile devices than ever, bad habits are carrying over into our cars, causing more accidents, and could very well cause an increase in rates and premiums when it comes to auto insurance in Phoenix. Putting the phone down, and keeping it down while driving, will help to ensure that rates for auto insurance in Scottsdale, Phoenix, or anywhere else don’t increase because of mobile device usage and distracted driving. Find the lowest car insurance rates with no obligation in just minutes with Summit Insurance Advisors. Check online and get a free auto insurance quote now!

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