According to US Department of Transportation, the number of people died because of distracted driving has reached about 3154 in 2013. This means that on average there were 9 people died per day due to this reason. Distracted driving means that people died in road accident caused by the driver was doing some other activities such as texting apart from focusing on the road.
Nowadays, technology invented to prevent drivers from getting distracted while driving on the road. One of such technology is Smartwheel, a snap-on steering wheel cover that monitors the hand on the wheel. The device is designed to be able to alert the user who mainly will be the driver for three main cases. If one of the driver’s hand is off the wheel for quite some time or both of the driver’s hands are off the wheel at all times or even when both hands’ distance is considered too close as the system might suspect the driver will be doing activity such as texting.
The steering wheel cover is made from material which feels nice on the hand. On top of that the device can be further enhanced to support gesture controls in the future as currently it only support taps and swipes.
Green light displayed on the device means that the driver’s both hands are in acceptable position whereas the system will give out visual and audio alerts if it decides that both hands are not in the correct position after some time. On top of that, it is also able to log the driver’s activities via Bluetooth. This feature is useful for parents to monitor their children especially when their children have just learnt driving.
Smartwheel will be launched in the US some time in the middle of the year with pricing starting at $199.