Sprint Drive First app

Sprint has come up with an app for its customers called “Drive First” that is designed to prevent distracted driving. As Chris Papsi writes in a WHPTV.com article, CBS-21 is teaming up with Sprint to help parents keep their teen drivers safe.

Papsi writes:

The statistics are frightening. Drivers are eight times more likely to be in an accident, when they are texting. Yet, surveys show 77% of young adults think they can safely text and drive. ‘We felt this was the responsible thing for Sprint to do,’ said Sprint’s Willy Pirtle.

To help, Sprint has teamed up with Dale Earnhardt Jr. to sponsor an App called Drive First. Drive First shuts down text messages and sends calls straight to voicemail when the phone travels over 10 miles per hour.

Sprint asks drivers to “take the pledge” to never text and drive, and offers a 15-day free trial for the Drive First app, which comes bundled with two family safety apps for free, Family Locator, and Mobile Controls. After the 15 free days, the app — which is only available for Google Android phones — costs $9.99 per month.

“If the car’s in driving mode, you should be too,” Sprint writes on its website. The app also shuts down email alerts when a vehicle is moving at 10 miles per hour or more. The “911” function allows for emergency calls to ensure that safety is the top priority.

Drive First gives parents a lot of control over how their teen uses the phone while driving. They can control all the contacts that come in, the apps, hands-free device, and the auto-reply, Papsi writes. The settings can be password-protected, he adds.

Papsi quotes Pirtie:

This is an application we will target to parents, because teen drivers as you know think they are invincible. We found in most cases when they are texting and driving they spend more than 10 percent of the time outside of their own lane.

As this blog wrote on March 8, 2013, a Viewpoint essay in the Journal of the American Medical Association noted that all vehicles should have devices in them making it impossible to use a cell phone when the car is moving. From 2005 to 2009, distracted driving fatalities increased by 22%, despite a considerable decline in that period in overall accident-related fatalities, wrote Jeffrey H. Coben, M.D., and Motao Zhu, Ph.D., in the Viewpoint piece.

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