4-in-5 Canadians say tech is the only answer

Aviva Canada

Toronto, ON

At #avivayolo we asked the question: what would it take to get people to stop texting and driving?

And now, Aviva Canada has the answer.

Aviva put the question to Canadians through a national public opinion survey conducted by the research firm Pollara. About 4-in-5 Canadians told us there is really only one solution they trust to keep them safe: technology.

Canadians believe only a technology solution that blocks drivers from using texting and other phone messaging functions while driving – not peer pressure or law enforcement – will ultimately solve the problem.

Said Aviva President and CEO Greg Somerville: “For the first time, what we are seeing is that Canadians don’t think social persuasion or law enforcement strategies against distracted driving are working, and they feel technology is the only realistic answer.”

The Aviva Canada survey of 1,504 Canadians conducted August 8-13, 2017 is considered accurate within plus/minus 2.5 percentage points, 19 times in 20. It highlights:

  • 95 per cent of respondents said texting and driving by others makes them feel unsafe on the roads.
  • 88 per cent of Canadians have witnessed other drivers texting while behind the wheel.
  • 22 per cent of respondents admitted texting while driving themselves, including at stoplights or stop signs.
  • Only 48 per cent of Canadians think fines and demerits are a deterrent.
  • Only 32 per cent said they think peer pressure will work.
  • Almost 4-in-5 Canadians – 78 per cent – said they want to see insurance companies, auto manufacturers and governments work toward a technology solution that would stop distracted driving by disabling texting and other functions while the driver is behind the wheel.
  • 73 per cent of Canadians said they would use anti-texting technology while driving if it was made available to them.

Several technology options are being developed. Marking the 10th anniversary of the Apple iPhone, the new iPhone 8 launch is expected to offer a text-blocking tool for drivers, known as “Do Not Disturb While Driving” (DND While Driving).