Eyes on the Road
This App Saves Lives Helps Reduce Distracted Driving by Rewarding Users for Staying Off Their Phones while Behind the Wheel
As RVers, much of our time is spent traveling from one site to the next. And with so many potential distractions, it’s more important than ever to focus on the road, especially when it comes to our smartphones. That’s why Ryan Frankel and the team at This App Saves Lives (TASL) have come up with a way to reward drivers for safe driving habits by offering an incentive to ditch the smartphone and focus on driving.
“Our goals are lofty and bold, which is what any worthwhile mission should be. We want to save lives by putting an end to distracted driving,” said Ryan. The TASL app does so using a simple points program: For every minute on the road users stay off their phones, they earn a point. Those points accrue over time and can be cashed in for rewards from providers like Shake Shack, Insomnia Cookies, and Reebok. Or, they can opt for a gift card from well-known brands like Amazon, Target, Apple, or Starbucks.
“We want to replace a dangerous habit with a more rewarding one,” said Ryan. Once users download the free TASL app, they can “set it and forget it,” making it fun and easy to rack up points while driving. (Acceptable uses of your phone include hands-free calls, navigation, and music).
One especially exciting TASL feature is the Parent Portal, where parents can monitor and reward their child’s safe driving directly on the app. “Teen drivers are a high-risk demographic for distracted driving,” said Ryan. “The data reveals that teen drivers represent a disproportionate percentage of fatalities from distracted driving. The TASL app uses unique technology and a rewards system that teens really respond to.”
Ryan knows the dangers of distracted driving firsthand; he was riding his bicycle when a distracted driver looking at their phone ran a red light. Ryan swerved to avoid a collision and suffered several fractures upon impact with the ground while the driver kept on going down the road. That’s when he knew he wanted to make a difference.
“There are 2 million distracted-driving- related accidents each year, with thousands of corresponding deaths,” Ryan said. “That’s thousands too many.”
As of this writing, there are about 35,000 active users of the TASL program, spanning all across the globe. The TASL app is available on the iOS App Store.