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Many Canadians see distracted drivers, but few acknowledge their own distractions

Canadians know that smartphone distractions are risky

The survey1 revealed that almost a third of Canadians ranked distracted driving as the biggest risk factor for drivers, second only to results for alcohol-impaired driving. Other risk factors named were speeding, aggressive driving, fatigue and drug-impaired driving.

What do you think is the biggest risk factor for drivers today?

Alcohol-impaired driving: 37%
Distracted driving : 27%
Speeding: 10%
Aggressive driving: 9%
Fatigue: 6%
Drug-impaired driving: 6%

Did you know it is against the law to use your cellphone while driving if not using a hands-free device?

Yes: 97%
No: 3%

Non-smartphone related distractions

When it comes to smartphones, 45% of respondents reported being distracted by texting, emailing, dialing and talking on their cellphone. However, 83% of respondents were also distracted by other factors, including the external environment (51%), passengers/children in the car (35%), changing console settings (35%) and eating/drinking (31%).

What would be the best way to deter distracted driving behavior?

Although 68% of Canadians say that current distracted driving laws are not effective deterrents to distracted driving, 55% stated that fines are still most likely to discourage them from being distracted behind the wheel.  Alarmingly, 37% stated that getting into a motor vehicle collision would be the best deterrent for distracted driving!

Partnering for Change

The Personal works closely with national partners, like the Traffic Injury Research Foundation and Parachute, to better inform Canadians about the risks of the road. We’re proud to share two additional resources that are helping to combat distracted driving:

Distraction-Related Fatal Collisions, 2000-2015
A new fact sheet from the Traffic Injury Research Foundation that examines the magnitude and trends in the role of driver distraction in motor vehicle fatalities in Canada.

View the full report

Distracted Driving: Changing the Culture Discussion Panel
An engaging discussion panel from Parachute, Canada's national charity dedicated to injury prevention. The panel brought together key stakeholders to discuss how Vision Zero can be best applied to distracted driving.

Watch a recording of the discussion

Many Canadians see distracted drivers, but few acknowledge their own distractions

Many things can distract you while you’re driving, like your smartphone, other passengers, or even your cup of coffee. According to a recent survey, 80% of Canadians have seen others distracted behind the wheel, but only 38% admit to it themselves.

1. The online survey, conducted in March 2018, polled 3,020 people across Canada.

The Personal refers to The Personal General Insurance Inc. in Quebec and The Personal Insurance Company in all other provinces and territories. The information and advice in this article are provided for informational purposes only. The Personal shall not be liable for any damages arising from any reliance upon such information or advice. The Personal recommends using caution and consulting an expert for comprehensive, expert advice.