The B.C. provincial government and ICBC are launching two pilot programs to test technologies that may combat distracted driving: a smart phone app for drivers and a camera for police.
“Distracted driving is a high-risk behavior that jeopardizes the safety of drivers and pedestrians alike. These pilots are the first step in a thoughtful examination of the role technology can play in preventing distracted driving,” said Attorney General David Eby.
The first pilot project will include up to 200 drivers using phone apps paired with telematic technology. The technology involves fitting a small device in the driver’s vehicle that communicates with an app installed on the driver’s smart phone.
The app works to block the use of a handheld device when the technology detects the vehicle is being driven.
ICBC says the pilot program is set to launch in January with results prepared in the spring of 2018. Findings will be used to help make future decisions around distracted driving prevention and enforcement, as well as changes to improve the fairness of how insurance rates are set.
If successful, the province says the pilot project could lead to reduced rates for good drivers.
Police to test Bluetooth-enabled distracted driving scope
The second pilot project will test a Bluetooth-enabled scope (camera) that will be able to capture images of drivers using their phones and instantly share them with other officers in the area.
The officer will then have the ability to show the image to the distracted driver.
Image via ICBC