March 10, 2016
$60 Billion Elephant in the Room
by Ted Chen
More than half of car accidents may now stem from phone-related distracted driving, according to a survey of agents -- a huge increase.
Research has found that one in four car crashes is caused by phone-related distracted driving. However, a recent LifeSaver study of agents suggests this figure to be a vast understatement. More than 60% of agents responded that half or more of all claims are now related to distracted driving.
It’s downright scary to think about the injuries, property damage and loss of life that results from distracted driving.
If our survey bears out on a national scale, the full cost could be north of $60 billion a year. And, of course, this cost is passed on to drivers in the form of increased premiums. In fact, we’re already seeing some major insurers (GEICO, Allstate and Zurich) publicly conceding that they are feeling the pain from this fast-growing epidemic.
Assuming the annual cost to insurance companies ranges from $30 billion (if one in four accidents stems from phone-related distracted driving) to $60 billion (using the numbers from our research), a mere 10% reduction in distracted driving accidents would save insurance carriers and their customers several billion dollars annually, in addition to saving lives and drastically reducing injuries.
The infographic below highlights the cost of distracted driving to the insurance industry. It also offers some insight into the minds of insurance agents receiving these claims, as well as the habits of today’s distracted drivers. Take a look and let us know your thoughts in the comments below.