Canadian Underwriter

More than half of surveyed drivers in the U.S. have made changes in driving behaviours since installing a telematics device: study

November 19, 2015   by Canadian Underwriter

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More than half (56%) of drivers participating in a public opinion survey from the Insurance Research Council (IRC) in the United States have made changes in how they drive since installing a telematics device provided by their insurance company in their primary vehicle.

36% of survey respondents said they have made “small changes” in how they drive and 18% say they have made “significant” changes

According to the survey from the Malvern, Pa.-based IRC, 36% of respondents said they have made “small changes” in how they drive, and 18% say they have made “significant” changes. The online survey of 1,135 respondents on behalf of the IRC was weighted to the U.S. population of adults aged 18 and older.

The report also found that 38% of drivers said they had made “no changes” in their driving practices since having a device installed, IRC noted in a statement. Drivers aged 65 and above were significantly less likely than other drivers to report making changes in how they drive.

A substantial majority (82%) of survey respondents with telematics devices provided by their auto insurance company reported receiving information for their company about their driving behaviour after having the device installed, the statement said. Eighty-one per cent of those receiving information said they reviewed the information and most (88%) of those reviewing the information said they found it to be helpful.

“These findings suggest that having telematics devices installed in vehicles can play a beneficial role in promoting safe driving and reducing the frequency of auto accidents and their associated costs,” said Elizabeth Sprinkel, senior vice president of the IRC, in the statement. “While we can’t say with certainty that the changes drivers make are always for the better, or whether beneficial changes that are made become permanent, we can confidently say that the introduction and use of telematics technology is a move in the right direction.”

The survey also explored driver awareness of auto insurance telematics; willingness to participate in a telematics program and reasons for not having a device installed; concerns about how the information collected by a telematics device is used; and factors that encourage participation in telematics programs.