Most teens know using a mobile phone while driving is a bad idea, but nearly 60 percent of high school seniors admitted in a recent CDC study that they text while driving, according to Drive Power, a company that is offering a new free app called DriveScribe.
The app turns the mobile phone from detractor into driving coach and motivates teens to drive safely with social competition and rewards, says the company.
Distracted driving has risen to an epidemic level and teens are at the most risk. Texting while driving increases the chance of crashing by 23 times and car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens.
DriveScribe, claimed to be the first mobile and web app of its kind, uses patent-pending technology to deliver automated, real-time driving assistance while improving driving skills over time.
After every driving trip, DriveScribe instantly calculates how well the teen drove on that outing, and also provides them with a Safe Driver Score that includes points earned for good driving performance.
“DriveScribe takes the very device that is distracting most teen drivers and turns it into something that not only coaches them but offers a path to rewards,” said Will England, CEO of Drive Power, the company that developed DriveScribe.
During a road trip, DriveScribe screens the driver’s performance, including speed, sudden movements and compliance with traffic regulations. While on the road, the app provides visual and verbal prompts and warnings through the mobile device.
It also allows parents to see how their teen is performing in real time and receive immediate alerts when driving violations – such as speeding or running a stop sign – occur.
In addition, on an Android device, DriveScribe can remove distractions by blocking incoming calls and messages while the app is enabled in a car. Anyone trying to reach the driver will be notified that the user is currently driving.
All of the information gathered during a trip loads to the DriveScribe web app where parents can log in with their teen to view and discuss how they are performing on the road.
The customized dashboard provides a snapshot of all driving trips, including specific metrics that allow parents and teens to track everything from miles and hours driven, a list of violations, and their cumulative Safe Driver Score.
In addition, parents can see detailed maps of every driving session their teen has taken with the DriveScribe mobile app.
DriveScribe “game-ifies” safe driving by bringing teens together in a fun, competitive and social experience. Teens can compete with friends and family by sharing their Safe Driver Scores in a social community.
The points they earn on every safe driving trip accumulate, and parents can add to the pot by sponsoring their driver each month at whatever amount they choose. Points can be cashed in at any time for gift cards at popular retailers including Sports Authority, the Gap, Dominos and Amazon.com.