New Study From Zendrive Shows Phone Addicts More Dangerous On The Road Than Drunk Drivers

The Distracted Driving Epidemic is growing fast, and most of us don’t even realize we’re being unsafe.

SAN FRANCISCO, April 09, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today Zendrive, the world’s largest driving behavior analytics company, released its annual Distracted Driving Snapshot. For the report, the company analyzed anonymized data from 1.8 million drivers covering 4.5 billion miles of road across three months and surveyed 500 people about distracted driving attitudes. Pedestrian fatalities are at a 30-year high, primarily due to distracted driving, which also increases the risk of all types of collision by 83%. According to Zendrive’s study, the Distracted Driving epidemic is even worse than last year. At every hour of the day, drivers nationally are 10% more distracted than 2018, with an increase apparent in every single state and city analyzed. The most common distractions include talking, texting, navigating, and selecting music.

When comparing this year’s data to the 2018 report, the company found that the number of ‘Phone Addicts’ doubled in the last year, and overall, ‘Phone Addicts:’

  • Spend 3x more drive time actively using their phones
  • Actively ignore the road 28% of the time they’re driving
  • Are on the road 1.5x more times than the general population
  • Are more of a public danger than drunk drivers

The company also conducted a consumer survey to supplement the hard data, aimed at gaining insights into driver perceptions of distracted driving. The survey found that people know distracted driving is a problem, but aren’t concerned enough to change their behavior:

  • 85% of respondents acknowledged distracted driving is a problem
  • 90% claimed to be safe drivers, but…
  • 47% admitted to using phones 10% or more of the time while driving, classifying them as ‘Phone Addicts.’

The least safe drivers are ignorant of the danger they pose… which means any of us could be a threat to those around us and not know it. 

“Using the phone while driving is one of the most dangerous things you can do on the road,” said Jennifer Smith, Executive Director of “Distracted driving has become a full-fledged epidemic. Families are torn apart every day by drivers who are not paying attention to the road because of a phone in their hand. Zendrive’s 2019 Distracted Driving Report shows that phone addiction is only getting worse; it’s time for everyone to start paying attention to the road. Put those phones away.”

“Distracted driving has become this generation’s drunk driving,” said Jonathan Matus, Zendrive CEO and co-founder. "In today’s culture, the ‘Phone Addict’ driver persona has become widespread and extremely dangerous. Because the most distracted drivers aren’t aware of their own danger, we encourage everyone to set up their autoresponders so they can keep their eyes off their phone and on the road.”

To help people concentrate on the road, Zendrive is launching the #TextYouLater challenge. Participants are encouraged to set up their driving autoresponders (through “Do Not Disturb While Driving” mode on iOS devices, and through “Android Auto” on Android devices), take a screenshot, then tweet their pledge while tagging their friends to do the same. Autoresponders reduce distractions like texting and calls, two of the most common activities found in the study, and can make the roads safer.

Zendrive's 2019 Distracted Driving Snapshot is the third in an annual series of reports. To learn more and to download the complete report, visit State- and city-specific driving data, as well as supporting graphs and images, are available upon request.

About Zendrive:
Zendrive is a mission-driven company, working to make roads safe using data and analytics. We conducted this study in support of national Distracted Driving Awareness month and to mark our 160 billionth mile of driver behavior data measured and analyzed.

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