USAA Unveils Top 10 States with Most & Least Distracted Drivers

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USAA released data on distracted driving trends in the U.S. during the first half of 2023. The data, compiled from USAA's SafePilot® telematics app, offers valuable insights into the states where drivers are most and least prone to distractions behind the wheel. The data comes at a time when more drivers have returned to the roads as more Americans are working from offices.

Through the first half of the year, USAA has seen an 18% increase in miles driven over the same period in 2022, along with a 10% increase in distracted driving behaviors, providing an opportunity to raise awareness on the importance of avoiding distractions on the roads as it remains a leading cause of accidents and fatalities for Americans. 

According to the most recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving claimed 3,522 lives in 2021, a 13% increase over pre-pandemic figures from 2019. 

Distracted driving is particularly dangerous because it diverts a driver's attention away from the road, increasing the risk of accidents. Common distractions include texting, talking on the phone, eating or using in-car entertainment systems.

"At USAA, we are committed to helping create safer roads for everyone," said Randy Termeer, USAA president of Property & Casualty. "By staying focused on the road and avoiding distractions, we can protect lives, reduce accidents and make our communities safer for all."

USAA has compiled data highlighting the top 10 states with the most and least distracted drivers based on their smartphone distraction rates (percentage of driving time that was distracted).

Top 10 States with the Most Distracted Drivers (January–June 2023)

These states exhibited the highest levels of distracted driving incidents, including texting, phone calls and other smartphone distractions that divert drivers' attention from the road.

State, Distraction Rate

1. Mississippi, 17.8 %
2. Louisiana, 16.8 %
3. South Carolina, 16.5 %
4. Alabama, 16.2 %
5. North Carolina, 15.8 %
6. Georgia, 15.5 %
*District of Columbia, 14.9 %
7. Arkansas, 14.7 %
8. Tennessee, 14.5 %
9. Texas, 14.0 %
10. Kentucky, 13.8 %

Top 10 States with the Least Distracted Drivers (January–June 2023)

These states demonstrated a commitment to safe driving practices, with fewer incidents of smartphone distractions compared to the national average of 12.1%.

State, Distraction Rate

1. Vermont, 6.8 %
2. Oregon, 8.0 %
3. Minnesota, 9.1 %
4. New Hampshire, 9.5 %
5. Maine, 9.6 %
6. Washington, 10.1 %
7. Montana, 10.2 %
8. Colorado, 10.3 %
9. Nevada, 10.3 %
10. Wyoming, 10.3 %

USAA encourages all drivers, regardless of their state's ranking, to prioritize safety behind the wheel. By taking simple precautions, we can collectively make the roads safer for everyone. USAA remains dedicated to promoting safe driving habits and will continue to raise awareness about the importance of distraction-free driving.

Driving data from SafePilot, USAA's behavior-based insurance app, leverages telematics technology to provide feedback on driving behaviors. SafePilot rewards safe driving with premium discounts; members who enroll receive up to a 10% discount for signing-up and continued policy discounts up to 30% for exhibiting safe driving behaviors. By incentivizing safe driving practices, SafePilot aims to reduce accidents, improve road safety and reward participants with discounts on their insurance.

SafePilot is currently available in 47 states plus Washington D.C.

Source: USAA

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