Better behavior sometimes temporary
We’ve all seen them and some of us have used them – those electronic modules provided by your auto insurance company that you plug into the port under your car’s dashboard that monitors, records, and reports your driving behavior to the insurer. The idea is that better drivers will get –and keep – better rates and pay less for their policy than average drivers. A new study says that works, up to a point.
The Insurance Research Council (IRC) study of 2,100 drivers age 18 and up shows 80% change their driving behavior while participating in an auto insurance company telematics program. But not all of the changes are permanent. Once the module is popped out of the car, 42% of those who made changes say that they now drive “pretty much” the same way as before. Just 15% say the changes they made are permanent. Then there’s some slippage. Another 19% report “rarely” reverting back to old habits and another 24% report “occasionally” doing so.
“These findings suggest that telematics programs play a beneficial role in promoting safe driving and reducing the frequency of auto accidents and their associated costs,” said David Corum, vice president of the IRC in a press release. “The findings also highlight an opportunity for insurers to do even better by offering suggestions and strategies drivers can use to make the positive changes permanent,” said Corum.
Other issues examined in the study include:
- Reasons for not participating in a telematics program when offered
- Concerns about how information about driving behavior is used
- Factors that encourage participation in telematics programs
- The impact of participation on insurance costs
- How drivers use their smartphones while driving
You can visit the IRC’s website, www.insurance-research.org, for information about purchasing a copy of the report.
LMA Newsletter of 8-31-20