Keith Halasy, Senior Director of Marketing, Azuga Fleet
Are your workers chasing down Pikachu while they’re out in the field or on the road in your fleet vehicle? Pokémon GO, the latest gaming app that utilizes the popular Nintendo Pokémon characters from the 90s is taking the world by storm. The app uses players’ phone location to create a semi-virtual world that surrounds players with Pokémon characters. The goal of the game is for players to move around their real-life location and catch as many Pokémon as they can in the virtual world using their smartphone.
As high energy and attention-consuming as it may be, players are taking the nostalgia to the extreme and playing in the most dangerous setting—on the road. A number of articles point out the hazards of playing Pokémon GO at the expense of paying attention to the real world. AAA warns that playing Pokémon GO while driving is just as distracting as texting while driving. Additionally, the DMV cautions that “what is meant to be a fun game can have tragic real-world consequences if you’re playing it while driving or crossing the street.”
While the game is a blast from the past, your fleet drivers are probably more likely to be texting or emailing while on the road—which is just as dangerous as chasing Pokémon. In fact, in 2013 8% of all vehicle crashes were due to the driver’s use of a cell phone, and that number grows by about 15% each year. When the cost of a wreck averages $22,000 plus $110,000 per injury (not including impacts on workers comp, vehicle insurance and other operating costs), stopping harmful driving behaviors is essential for increasing ROI and efficiency.
At Azuga, we know that safe driving is one of the key benefits of using a telematics solution to help manage your vehicle fleet. As part of Azuga Fleet we offer DriveSafe, a feature that can block app usage, as well as texting and emailing, when a vehicle is in motion, so you can prevent your team from playing distracting games like Pokémon GO and answering mobile notifications on their Android phones.
Distracted driving can have a disastrous impact on your workers, the public, and your business, costing up to $10,000 in fines. But easy-to-use and affordable technology is available to help you identify and stop these behaviors, keeping the communities where you and your drivers live and work safer for all.