Driven to Distraction International Conference Presentations

Transport Canada is studying in-car driver
The Canadian Automobile Association and the Traffic Injury Research Foundation hosted the Driven to Distraction International Conference on March 1, 2012 in Toronto, Canada.

The Evolution of Distracted Driving 
Robyn Robertson, M.C.A., President and CEO, Traffic Injury Research Foundation

Generally estimated that distraction is a factor in 20-30% of crashes.
TIRF data show:
- 13-16% of fatality crashes
- 23-27% of injury crashes
- 100-Car Naturalistic Study showed distraction a factorin 33% of crashes and 27% of near-crashes.

Distracted Driving in Canada 
Brian Jonah, Senior researcher, The Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA)

The presentation covered "observational" surveys done by the CCMTA show a decline in drivers' cell phone use from 5.9 per cent in 2007 to 3.3 in 2010 for urban Canada. Jonah's report notes problems with the methodology and outlines the plan for the next survey.

The Effects of Different Types of Distractions: Findings from the EU 
Dr. George Yannis, University of Athens

Dr. Yannis' current research focuses on driver distraction, safety of power two wheelers and pedestrians and safety measures assessment.

What is distracted driving?
What is the difference between driver distraction and driver inattention?
How critical risk factor is distracted driving?
Which are the in-vehicle distraction factors?
Which are the external distraction factors?
What is the effect of distracted driving
- to driver attention?
- to traffic behaviour?
- to accident risk?
Can distracted driving be prevented?
What's on a driver's mind?

In-Vehicle Distractions 
Dr. Oliver Carsten, University of Leeds

Dr. Carsten has led the development of the advanced driving simulator at Leeds and is chair of the Road User Behaviour Working Party of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety. He has been a member of several expert groups of the European Transport Safety Council.

- Visual distraction: tasks that require driver to focus visual attention away from the roadway
- Manual distraction: tasks that require the driver to manipulate a system
- Cognitive distraction: tasks that divert the driver’s mental attention away from vehicle control, vehicle manoeuvring and interaction with other road users

Effects of Cell Phones on Driving Performance 
Dr. David Strayer, University of Utah

Dr Strayer has been conducting research on driving and distraction for over a decade and many of his articles are available on-line at . He reported on the cognitive side of driver distraction including:

Encoding deficits
- Reduced attention to perceptual inputs
- Clear implications for traffic safety

Retrieval deficits
- Failure to retrieve prior episodes
- Less clear implications for traffic safety

Amy Schick, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Schick joined the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in June 2007 as a Presidential Management Fellow. Amy currently works in the Office of Impaired Driving and Occupant Protection developing, testing and refining best-practice highway safety countermeasures. Her program areas include distracted driving and occupant restraints.

In 2010, an estimated 3,092 motor vehicle fatalities were distraction affected. The percentage of drivers holding cell phones to their ears while driving stands at 5%. This rate translates in 660,000 vehicles driven by someone using a hand-held cell phone at a typical daylight moment in 2010. She recommended

Emerging technologies, emerging issues
Peter Burns, Transport Canada

Burns is Chief of the Ergonomics and Crash Avoidance Division at Transport Canada. He leads research supporting the development of motor vehicle safety standards, guidelines and related crash countermeasures. This work primarily focuses on assessing the safety impact of vehicle-based intelligent transport systems. He concluded his presentation with:

-There are effective options for limiting driver distraction that can be applied to the design and management of in-vehicle information systems.
-Redundant countermeasures in the driver-vehicle road system can help to limit the consequences of distraction.
-Emerging technologies are offering new challenges and solutions for limiting distraction.

Alberta’s Progressive Approach to Legislation 
Shaun Hammond, Assistant Deputy Minister, Transportation Safety Services Division at Alberta Transportation

Hammond's Division is responsible for the implementation of Alberta’s Traffic Safety Plan, leading a coordinated effort of 12 government departments with a goal of reducing collisions, injuries, and fatalities on Alberta roads. He summarized the Transportation Safety Services Division's work:

- 2004 – McDermid Report  387 fatalities
- 2006 – Alberta Traffic Safety Plan 453 fatalities
- 2007 – 3 year Traffic Safety Action Plan 458 fatalities
– With annual operational plans through 2010
- 2010 – Plan renewal “TSP – 2011-2015”  344 fatalities

In any given year, the number of people killed on Alberta roads is roughly equivalent to the population of the average Alberta Elementary School.

Quebec’s Experiences and Evaluation Efforts 
Pierre-Olivier Sénéchal, Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec

Sénéchal is a road safety adviser at the SAAQ. His files include speeding, reckless driving and courtesy at the wheel, street racing and car surfing, demerit points, as well as access to driving a heavy vehicle.

Section 439.1 of the Highway Safety Code provides:
No person may, while driving a road vehicle, use a hand-held device that  includes a telephone function.For the purposes of this section, a driver who is holding a hand-held device that includes a telephone function is presumed to be using the device. This prohibition does not apply to drivers of emergency vehicles in the  performance of their duties.
Effective April 1, 2008

Experiences with Enforcement 
Staff Sgt. Chris Whaley, Ontario Provincial Police

Whaley is the Provincial Manager of Specialized Patrol in the Highway Safety Division. His presentation answers why distracted driving is now one of the "big four" enforcement priorities of the OPP.
- 16.5% impaired
- 21.4% speed
- 24.6% seat belt
- NHTSA reports the various forms of distraction contribute to 8 out 10 collisions
- Study results vary from 20% to 50%

European Progress 
Antonio Avenoso, ETSC

Avenoso is currently the Executive Director of the European Transport Safety Council. Within ETSC Antonio has managed several international research networks and road safety programmes. He noted the EU Policy orientations on road safety, July 2010 has 7 strategic objectives:
1. Improve education and training of road users
2. Increase compliance with road traffic rules
3. Safer road infrastructure
4. Safer vehicles
5. Promote the use of modern technology to improve road safety
6. Improve emergency and post-care services
7. Improve safety of vulnerable road users

Experiences of Canadian Industry with Distracted Driving Policies 
Paul Greco, Spectra Energy

Greco leads the development of corporate EH&S strategies, policies and programs to achieve Spectra Energy’s vision of a zero incident culture.  A key aspect of the department’s work involves facilitating the implementation of systems and tools to enable Spectra’s subsidiaries to be compliant with Management System requirements.

Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory.
Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
Sun Tzŭ c. 490 BC, Chinese strategist

Experiences of International Industry with Distracted Driving Policies 
Jack Hanley, Network of Employers for Traffic Safety

Hanley is Executive Director of the Network of Employers for Traffic Safety. He is responsible an annual Strength in Numbers fleet safety benchmark survey, the annual Drive Safely Work Week campaign and marketing the Novice Driver’s Road Map. In addition, Jack represents NETS on the UN Road Safety Collaboration, the principal steering committee for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 initiative.

Road Safety Best Practices (From 2009 and 2010 data years)
- More likely to publish a scorecard monthly
- More likely to terminate a driver for violating  the company's mobile phone policy
- More likely to review mobile-phone records after a collision
- More likely to have a special team or board review collisions
- More likely to use a classroom training format

Effectiveness Messaging Around Distracted Driving 
Dee Allsop, CEO, Heart+Mind Strategies

Over his 25-year career, Allsop has had experience providing market positioning and communications strategies for some of the world's largest companies and organizations, including the largest automobile manufacturer, largest aerospace manufacturer, largest hotel and lodging chain, and the largest chemical company, among others.

Positive change emanates from new self evident ideas that protect, promote and preserve shared core values.
What are the core values that relate to Distracted Driving?
What the self-evident ideas that protect, promote and preserve them?

Grassroots Initiatives 
Karen Bowman, Drop It and Drive
Founder, Drop It And Drive

In October 2010 Bowman founded Drop It And Drive with the idea to take a proactive approach to ending distracted driving by increasing education and awareness. The D.I.A.D. education campaign became a very personal cause after Karen’s 8-year-old daughter was hit by a distracted driver less than three months later.

Program essentials
- Flexible
- Poster Contest – Teens – Youth – Adults
- Nationally Relevant
- Dynamic
- Multiple Speakers – Different Backgrounds
- Stories vs. Stats – Videos – Slides
- Interactive
- Reality-based
- No holds-barred

A Youth Perspective 
Matt Evans, Ontario Students Against Impaired Driving

Evansis currently the Executive Director for OSAID, a youth program consisting of over 300 provincial OSAID chapters and 5000 teenage volunteers. His message to you people: Control. You have the power.

All presentations are online.