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Police in-vehicle Laptop use and Driver Distraction

Police use of in-vehicle laptops and the related driver distraction has been featured a number of times in this blog.

A recent item on the Today.com website puts this issue in the spotlight again, with increasing evidence of the number of distraction-related accidents where police use of an in-vehicle computer is involved.

It is interesting that the distracted driving issue is now making it into mainstream media such as the Today show. It really starts to bring the problem forward and centre where it should be.

Bryan Vila, a professor at Washington State University in Spokane, is one of the world’s leading experts on distracted police driving. He put Today’s reporter behind the wheel in the driving simulator he uses to monitor officers’ eye movement and reaction time.

Once use of an on-board computer was added to the simulation, the reporter ran off the road. Review showed that his eyes were off the road, looking at the computer screen, for almost four seconds. “That’s enough to cause a hell of an accident,” Vila said.

Some police departments across the country are trying to address the issue in fairly basic ways. In Fort Wayne, Indiana, police officers’ in-car computer won’t allow them to keep typing after going 10 to 15 miles per hour. And in Fort Worth, Texas, officers aren’t allowed to use their computers at all while driving, unless it’s an emergency.

More sophisticated solutions are required however, to allow Police Officers to perform their duties effectively without endangering the lives of other road users.

“We believe that with Blank-it, the solution is already there. Blank-it makes it possible to greatly reduce the interaction with an on-board computer whilst leaving enough there to make it a usable tool for the officer. Blank-it can disable touch-screens or keyboards, keeping audible components active and restricting what is visible when the vehicle is moving  – addressing the major components of driver distraction without reducing officer efficiency.”

Blank-it does all of this from a rugged USB Multi-motion sensor fob that can easily be retro fitted to an existing fleet or incorporated into new installs. The easy to install and configure Blank-it software allows the officer to perform their job but keep their eyes on the road.

Find out more today at Blank-it.com – or contact us on 08 9486 7122 (if calling from outside Australia: +61 8 9486 7122).

 

 

See original article here: http://www.today.com/news/distracted-police-driving-researchers-seek-solution-1D80406085

Blank-it a Winner at the Road Safety Awards 2014

As we mentioned in a previous post, Blank-it was a finalist in the Innovation Category of the Australian Road Safety Awards 2014.

We are now very proud to announce that Blank-it has won the Innovation award.

This is a welcome recognition of the hard work that has gone into making Blank-it the world leader in in-vehicle screen blanking and management.

More details and responses from the team at Blank-it to follow.

 

At Blank-it, we know that driver distraction should be a primary area of concern for all drivers and employers, one that has to be addressed through policy, education and the use of technology-based solutions.

 

Blank-it has been designed specifically to address the problem of driver distraction caused by in-vehicle computers and laptops. It is easily installed, doesn’t rely on 3rd party input such as GPS, is fully customisable for different working environments and will help businesses conform to distracted driving legislation and OH&S requirements.

Find out more today at Blank-it.com – or contact us on 08 9486 7122 (if calling from outside Australia: +61 8 9486 7122).

Blank-it – Australian Road Safety Awards 2014 Finalist

We are pleased to announce that Blank-it has been selected as a finalist in the Australian Road Safety Awards for  2014.

Blank-it is a finalist in two categories – Innovation and Corporate Fleet Safety.

The National Awards lunch in Brisbane on November 27th will see all finalists recognised for their achievements and the announcement of the winners across all categories along with the announcement of the Founder’s Award.

Watch this space for more updates.

http://www.australianroadsafetyawards.com.au/

Australian Road Safety Awards Logo

Decide to Drive

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), the Orthopaedic Trauma Association (OTA) and the Auto Alliance have joined forces to launch ‘Decide to Drive’, a campaign aimed at highlighting the dangers of distracted driving.

What makes this campaign different is its interactive nature. Visitors can use the site to report instances of distracted driving that they see on the roads.

Once submitted, these ‘stories’ will be displayed on the website and people can vote on the seriousness of the case. The site covers all kinds of driver distraction, and we’ve already seen cases of people using computers while driving.

The website also includes background information on Distracted Driving, plus resources and links to useful sites.

This site only covers the United States, but it would be interesting to see similar websites introduced for other countries and regions.

We intend to keep an eye on this site, and we may highlight individual stories that feature computer use.

Decide to Drive can be found here:  http://www.decidetodrive.org/