OTTAWA – Nearly 8 in 10 Canadian drivers (79%) admit to being distracted while driving, according to a CAA poll released today. And among the most dangerous distractions people name are their own in-vehicle technologies, like a phone, the vehicle console, or voice-activated features.
“Distracted driving is already the largest cause of collisions in Canada, but the reasons behind it are evolving,” said Ian Jack, vice president of public affairs at CAA National. “New technology in vehicles these days can make a ride more convenient, or even safer, but the combination of all that tech together can lead to even more distraction.”
Asked to say what is distracting them these days, Canadians listed in order: eating or drinking, interacting with the vehicle’s console, using voice-activated features, and using their phone.
“It’s impossible to eliminate all distractions,” Jack said. “But to keep yourself and others as safe as possible on the road, CAA urges you to do as much as you can to reduce distractions before you drive. Set the destination, check your safety features, put the phone on do not disturb – these are the kinds of things we can do before we start driving.”
CAA launched a campaign today to bring home this message. Called #BeforeYouDrive, it urges drivers to get it all out of the way before leaving. The campaign, which features a catchy and fun tune, was developed by Vancouver-based agency One Twenty-Three West and is playing on social channels across Canada. CAA received funding from Transport Canada for the campaign.
Click here to learn more about the campaign.
CAA’s tips to avoiding distracted driving
- Set your playlist, podcast, safety features, whatever you can, before you drive
- Set the GPS and review directions before driving
- Set your phone to do not disturb
- Stow and secure loose objects
- Avoid eating and drinking while driving
The latest CAA findings are based on a poll of 2,009 Canadians carried out from November 24 to December 2, 2021. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-2.19%, 19 times out of 20.
CAA is a not-for-profit federation of eight Clubs providing over 6.5 million Members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure, and consumer protection. CAA was named Canada’s most trusted brand in 2021 by the Peter B. Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria.
For further comment, or to book an interview, please contact:
Senior Director, public affairs