New App Could Help Prevent Distracted Driving

By: Estephany Escobar Email
By: Estephany Escobar Email

David Grant created an Android application that could help stop distracted driving.

The application is aimed for families and companies with employees driving.

According to Grant, an administrator can set up 'Travel Halo' in different phones. The administrator will set a speed limit after which the application starts running.

When the driver reaches the set speed limit, the phone will disable texting and browsing. The phone will only let the user make phone calls, according to Grant.

When the person drives under the set speed limit or stops driving, all the features of the phone will work again.

"Somebody can tell a person that is concerned that they won't text, that they won't check their web, check their Facebook while they're driving. But that's only a verbal commitment," he said.

He said he hopes this app can help prevent deaths like the one of student driver Ricky Valencia Rocha.

"Texting while driving has not only affected me directly but indirectly," Grant said.

A truck driver who was texting killed Valencia Rocha in the summer of 2011. Grant's brother-in-law was driving in the passenger seat when the crash happened.

"It was not only an emotional situation for the family of the victim but it also turned into a bad situation for the driver," he said."

According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, 75 percent of young drivers have sent a text message while driving. They are more 23 times more likely to crash.

However, 49 percent of people admit to texting and driving multiple times.

Virginia State Police sergeant Frank Pyanoe said distracted driving is a concern for people of all ages.

"Even elderly folks are getting used to technology now. They're easing into technology so it's becoming a concern and it's involved in an increasing amount of crashes," Pyanoe said.

Grant said if apps like this would've been in the market before, it could've prevented many deaths.

"It could've prevented a lot of accidents, my brother in law's accident. Things along those lines. There needs to be something done."

The application will launch in two weeks.


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