Here is an app that caught my interest as soon as I saw the e-mail. Worry is probably the leading cause of stress for many parents and vehicle fleet managers alike. Dangerous Decisions has released an Apple iPhone app designed to monitor driving conditions in a vehicle and it is available as a basic free download or in a pro version that carries a one-time price of $24.99.
No sooner did I hit the sentence in the press release with the link to the download site than I put the free version on my iPhone and went out for a “spin” in the latest test vehicle.
The app is easy to download and set up. The free version does not allow for adjusting of speed and g-force limits but still provides a good snapshot of driving habits.
One caveat: The iPhone must be in the vehicle positioned somewhere between 0-90 degrees to the road and each monitored driving session requires someone to push the start and stop trip buttons on the screen. (I think fleet managers with control over a driver’s paycheck may have more luck in getting their wards to remember this little step over parents of teen drivers, but as I am neither I reserve final judgment for you.) The iPhone must also be left alone, so for accurate readings don’t call your driver or teen while they are driving and using this app (unless you provide them with an alternate phone of course).
I can definitely see the advantage of purchasing the Safe Driver Pro version, but even in the free basic app I was surprised just how well things worked. There is a digital speed readout at the top of the phone screen and in the center is a ball that – for safe driving purposes – needs to remain in the small center square. I found alarms to be going off quite often during my shakedown trip. Apparently the app did not like the high-riding Ram 2500 with lift kit and big tires. Every time I turned a corner the screen would flash red as if someone had just sunk my battleship or something. Again, the adjustable parameters in the pro version would solve some of these issues.
Here is the announcement from Dangerous Decisions:
Finally a great reason to buy an iPhone for your teenager or vehicle fleet. The Safe Driver app for iPhones has been developed to reduce driving fatalities.
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens, accounting for more than one in three deaths in this age group. In 2008, nine teens ages 16 to 19 died every day from motor vehicle injuries. Per mile driven, teen drivers ages 16 to 19 are four times more likely than older drivers to crash. Fortunately, teen motor vehicle crashes are preventable, and proven strategies can improve the safety of young drivers on the road.*
Dangerous Decisions LLC. is proud to announce their new “Safe Driver” app for the iPhone. The “Safe Driver” app uses all the technology of the iPhone to deliver an app built exclusively to help develop safe driving behaviors.
“Developing an effective tool to improve safe driving behaviors has always been a passion of mine and I am committed to reducing the number of vehicle fatalities as a result of unsafe driving behaviors” says Chester T. Karella, owner and founder of Dangerous Decisions LLC.
The “Safe Driver” app is a complex program designed to be accurate and simple to set-up and use. Improving driving skills and enforcing safe driving behaviors are critical. The “Safe Driver” app is a tool that monitors acceleration, braking, turning and speed. The device provides both audible and visual feedback designed to help the driver operate the vehicle within mutually established limits involving excessive acceleration, heavy brake use, hard cornering and speeding. A trip report for each session is maintained on the iPhone and can be password protected along with all the other settings.
The “Safe Driver Pro” app allows the parent/administrator to set-up multiple vehicles or Drivers. Text and Email notifications can be used to receive “Real-Time” feedback when the trip starts/ends, and when any limits are exceeded. All limit violations are plotted on a Google map for review with the driver and can be emailed for record purposes.
Additional benefits to developing safe driving behaviors include reduced operating costs – Reduced fuel and maintenance costs.
Comfort knowing that your child is safely at their destination, even if they forget to call.
A cost effective tool owners of fleet vehicles can use to enforce safe driving behaviors.
Potentially lower your insurance premiums – Some Insurance companies may offer discounts.
We invite you to download and take a free test drive before you buy. Imagine, No additional monthly subscription fees; this is a one time purchase.
More information can be found at www.dangerousdecisions.com.