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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


New app targets safer driving

Drivers face many distractions on the road everyday, but ASafeDrive, a new iPhone app, tries to aid new and old drivers alike.

ASafeDrive tells drivers their own driving speed as well as the speed limit on the road on which they are driving.

Working on their third installment of the application, ASafeDrive differs from many other applications in that it can be used all over the world. As soon as one driver inputs the speed limit for a particular street, it is then tracked by the program’s global positioning device, approved by the application and accessible to any other application user.

Signals of surpassed speed limits included flashing red screens, small sounds and vibrations.

Alex BenBassat, the creator of ASafeDrive 3.0, notes that this is just the first of many steps he is taking to aid young drivers and appease investors.

“”I’m building a speed limit database at the same time as I’m entertaining people with this app,”” he said. “”This is one idea, but it’s a small piece in a huge puzzle … to help young drivers.””

BenBassat was inspired to create this application by his own driving.

“”I was driving, trying to do like ten things at once,”” BenBassat said, noting distractions while driving in Los Angeles.

Distracted driving is just the kind of thing that police, especially around crowded college campuses like the UA, want to prevent.

“”Driving is a dynamic activity … there’s a lot of things that a person has to do to drive safely,”” said Sgt. Juan Alvarez, public information officer of the University of Arizona Police Department. “”Accidents are unavoidable, but limiting distractions and inattention is something we can change.””

Linda Gorman, public affairs director for the American Automobile Association for Arizona, sees distractions while driving as a dangerous element, as AAA Arizona just lobbied for a ban on texting while driving.

The No Texting While Driving Act, which passed with a 5-0 vote on Feb. 12 in the Arizona Senate Committee on Natural Resources, Infrastructure and Public Debt, will move on to the Arizona House of Representatives.

Although AAA Arizona does not have an official position on the ASafeDrive and other safe driving applications, they generally discourage anything that takes focus off the road.

“”A lot of these applications are distracting in and of themselves,”” said Gorman. “”We want people to stay 100 percent focused on their driving.””

Despite contentious debate, BenBassat has gotten “”positive reviews”” for the application. ASafeDrive costs 99 cents and is available now on Apple iPhones and the later version of Verizon Droid phones as well.

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