Distracted driving is anything that diverts your attention away from driving, but no distraction is more ubiquitous than cell phone use behind the wheel. In a survey of Colorado drivers, 58 percent admitted to selecting entertainment on their devices, 25 percent talked on a handheld cell phone and nearly 19 percent read mobile messages when driving. While various apps and programs aim to reduce distracted driving, many are plagued with cumbersome navigation or gimmicks that ultimately result in more distracted driving, not less. None have evolved or gained enough popularity to affect long-term behavior change. Until recently, many phone manufacturers hadn’t addressed the issue within their operating systems.
Then, in September 2017, Apple introduced Do Not Disturb While Driving features to thousands of existing phones, though, research indicated nearly 50 percent of people didn’t know their phone had this new feature. Working with CDOT on a comprehensive paid media campaign, CIG created resources, tutorials and guidance for Colorado drivers to equip themselves and their phones with the resources to prevent distracted driving.