South Carolina Car Accident Lawyers discuss how vehicle technology can lead to an increase in distracted driving accidents. General Motors (GM) will soon be installing a new application called Marketplace in all 2017 and 2018 Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, and Cadillac models. The app allows users to locate gas stations, find parking, order food, reserve tables at restaurants, make hotel reservations, and shop for car parts from a dashboard touch screen. This technology operates independently from smartphone software, On-Star roadside assistance, and customer support service.

The GM vice president for Global Connected Customer Service estimates that the new app will be available on four million vehicles over the next 18 months. GM is currently working with Shell, Exxon Mobil, Parkopedia, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Applebee’s, Wingstop, IHOP, delivery.com, TGI Fridays, and Priceline. Accroding to GM’s vice president, the company will be adding more vendors and improving the app during the upcoming months.

Distracted Driving Risk

Although the app is designed to be easy and safe to use while driving, it is drawing opposition from safety advocates who believe it will increase accidents by contributing to distracted driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that more than 3,400 people were fatally injured and 391,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents during one year alone. The NHTSA reports that a significant portion of these injuries and fatalities is due to mobile device usage.

However, GM’s response is that their software developers adhered to industry guidelines in designing the system to minimize distracted driving. GM’s VP says that by using the app, customers will increase the ease and productivity of their trips. The GM Director of Global Digital Experience and Connected Vehicles agrees, stating that the app will actually encourage safer and more efficient driving because drivers can use the Marketplace app instead of their phones.

Dangerous Apps Can Cause More Accidents

A University of Utah psychology professor warns that technology may be used in ways its developers do not anticipate, thereby making the car more dangerous. His recent study found that many of the features in 2017 vehicles, including those that allow drivers to place telephone calls, text, tune radios, or program navigation systems should not be enabled while driving because they are distracting.

The NHTSA found that the risk of getting into a wreck doubles when a driver takes his or her eyes off the road for just two seconds. According to the study, voice-based and touch-screen technology typically distracts drivers for more than 24 seconds. Programming navigation was the most distracted task, followed by text messaging and audio entertainment.

South Carolina Car Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Represent Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents

Drivers can become distracted by texting, eating, listening to the radio, or using in-vehicle technology such as the Marketplace app. If you have been involved in an accident caused by distracted driving, contact the experienced car accident lawyers in South Carolina at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A.. Our team of knowledgeable and focused attorneys can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Contact us online or call us at 803-929-3600 to schedule a free consultation.

We represent those injured in all types of car accidents throughout South Carolina, including in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.