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Insurance Company Telematics/ODBII sensors

Old 09-20-19, 11:48 AM
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Insurance Company Telematics/ODBII sensors

I had an acquaintance asking about an insurance company Telematics device today.

Ok, so as a cyclist hiding under a rock, I hadn't heard about them until today.

Most interesting devices, although it is not clear quite what is available, although it is likely that more and more information will become available over time as cars get more driving sensors.

How Do Those Car Insurance Tracking Devices Work?

For example, Mom's Prius has this coffee cup lane departure warning. I have no doubt that would be something that the insurance companies would love. I've also gotten the "BRAKE" warning a couple of times when parking.

Apparently ONSTAR equipped cars can retrieve the information without a secondary adapter. Hopefully that functionality isn't being abused.

Anyway, the technology leaves one with a lot of questions.
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Old 09-20-19, 12:03 PM
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Onstar and other devices of it's type retrieve data helpful to your driving and can automatically contact emergency services in the event of an accident. You can also call for help manually, and other information.

Bicycle emergency beacons came out of this idea I am sure.
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Old 09-20-19, 12:03 PM
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As someone who is a stickler for following traffic law and motors infrequently I could probably get a discount if I handed over enough data over time, but I'd never opt in. However as the article notes 'opt-in' may become less of an option in the future.
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Old 09-20-19, 12:06 PM
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How do the phone apps determine whether you're driving or a passenger? It sounds like your rates could be hiked if you carpool with a driver who speeds.
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Old 09-20-19, 12:11 PM
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From what I can tell about the phone app (allstate) is that is is just a marketing tool to collect data from users. Anyone can use it, customer or not, and get 'rewards' for good driving signals.
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Old 09-20-19, 01:16 PM
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Esurance uses a phone app for the type of telemetry we're talking about, too. To determine rates based on driving habits.

I can ride faster than traffic from about 2 until around 7 pm. I wonder how "driving" occasionally on non-motorized MUPs would affect my rates?
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Old 09-20-19, 04:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
How do the phone apps determine whether e myou're driving or a passenger? It sounds like your rates could be hiked if you carpool with a driver who speeds.
I've been using one from the Hartford for a while and it doesn't work very well. You have a choice to enter whether you drove, were a passenger, bicycled, took a train/bus/taxi for 48 hours(?) before the data is automatically uploaded.

Mine makes a noise when ever it starts based on a accelerometer in the phone, and will go off when I pick up the phone when I'm out of the car. It also uses the accelerometer to track hard braking, and considers the phone flopping around in my pocket to the hard braking. This version tracks your route, and the first time I used it I rode to work using my usual route which includes several bike paths. I used a mapping program at the same time to compare the 2 programs, and every time I got a prompt from the mapping program the spyware showed that as a distraction that would count against whatever discount they offer. When I called to ask about that I also asked if my driving on a bike path would affect my discount (and gee, wouldn't driving like that make you seem like a higher risk?) and was told they wouldn't even notice that.
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Old 09-20-19, 04:46 PM
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I wonder how much just telling a person that "Big Brother is Watching" will affect their driving behavior.

I hope they actually correlate behaviors with accidents, rather than having someone sitting in the back room deciding that rolling stops are dangerous without actual data.

I will say that it is easy enough to determine if a KOM on Strava was done in a car or on a bicycle... with 99.9% certainty.
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Old 09-20-19, 10:58 PM
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Ahhh, the monitored world in which we've chosen to live. Orwell was right.
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Old 09-20-19, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I wonder how much just telling a person that "Big Brother is Watching" will affect their driving behavior.
Mentioning "Big Brother" makes one sound like a paranoid old fogey anymore..

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Old 09-21-19, 01:19 AM
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Went through Hell getting resale Iron Maiden tickets for next Wednesday yes the technology I have is antiquated
but that was 6 months ago So I have e-mobile tickets and an e-mobile parking pass. So hopefully I’ll see the concert with no problems. Iron Maiden is suppose to be all electronic to cut out the scalpers but I got legally scalped The official seller aka Ticketmaster with their service fees is scalping to start with. I figured I spent 50 more bucks then I should. Not too upset about it because I’m seeing Iron Maiden. But the business practice is how can I say is BS.
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Old 09-21-19, 12:08 PM
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Progressive has an option to use a tracker for a while to get driving behavior. It's looking at speed and acceleration.

The tracker plugs into the ODBII port and transmits the data via a built-in cell phone.

It was optional and short term. I had no trouble getting the discount (years ago).

All (newer) cars keep a short history of data (which can be recovered after an accident).
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Old 09-21-19, 11:50 PM
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It would make good economic sense to mandate monitoring of all vehicles for the most common risky behaviors: hard acceleration, braking and swerving. Eventually eye tracking would be included to be sure drivers' eyes are on the road, not on their mobile devices and toys, unless they've opted for AI driving.

It's not just good business for insurance companies. Bad driving endangers everyone and costs millions in medical expenses. I've been hit twice by reckless drivers and their insurance didn't come close to paying my actual costs for medical expenses, lost wages, etc., let alone compensatory damages.

And pedestrians are far worse off now than ever, much more vulnerable than cyclists. Safer cars have only made it safer for occupants of cars. If anything it's made things worse for pedestrians and cyclists because some drivers may behave more recklessly if they believe they are safer in their own vehicles -- assuming the same psychology applies that has been theorized about wearing helmets leading cyclists to engage is riskier behavior.
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Old 09-21-19, 11:57 PM
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All this talk about accelerating and braking... Is light timing good or bad?
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Old 09-22-19, 03:07 AM
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Is light timing good or bad?
Depends on whether we're talking about how engineers set up the timing of lights, or the practice of drivers adjusting speed to catch the green lights, without regard to safest practice.

Most cities adjust light timing to suit the predominant traffic, but anyone who spends enough time in traffic has good reason to doubt the logic of traffic light timing.

If we're talking about drivers speeding to catch the green or beat the red, that's dangerous. Same when cyclists do it.

Locally there are several Strava segments in heavy traffic areas that depend on catching green lights or blasting through red lights -- some segment titles basically brag about being dangerous, or imply cyclists are supposed to run red lights to get a KOM or top ten. Those segments are idiotic. I hide 'em all. The Strava nannies can report 'em if they want. I just ignore them. Anything shorter than a mile is a waste of attention unless there's a double digit climb. The only Strava segments I pay any attention to are on uninterrupted routes. Some older Strava segments are no longer practical to try for a KOM because traffic patterns, stop signs and traffic lights have changed since those Segments were created. I'm not blasting through a red light even in a rural area just to snag a PR. Even if I can see in all directions there are too many hidey holes and blind spots where a small car could go unseen if I were to blast though an intersection.

But if Flo put one of those Progressive safe rider doodads on my bike, my insurance rates would go up ... if I had insurance.
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Old 09-22-19, 03:41 AM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
If we're talking about drivers speeding to catch the green or beat the red, that's dangerous. Same when cyclists do it.
Not speeding... unless you're on a bicycle and running flat out to keep up with the lights.

But, in cars, say there is a set of a half dozen lights in a row, all timed.

There are two ways to deal with them. One method is to mash the pedal the the metal as soon as the light turns green... then when one reaches the next red, slam on the brakes... Repeat... and Repeat....

The other way is light timing. Try to adjust one's speed so that one arrives at the intersection still moving just as the light turns green. And, thus hits the intersection moving. Doing so may well be faster than the first method, and more fuel efficient as one doesn't have the rapid acceleration and slamming on the brakes.

However, the light timing also has the inherent risk that one may enter the intersection at moderate speed before the intersection completely clears of cross traffic.

Doing so in bike lanes can also be inherently risky for bicycles as there is the temptation to pass cars on the right.
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Old 09-22-19, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
All this talk about accelerating and braking... Is light timing good or bad?
Around here they're timed to prevent a safe and reasonable flow of traffic, it's all start and stop that bunches up traffic at varying speeds.
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Old 09-22-19, 11:04 AM
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Since timing of lights came up:

Pedestrian-first stop light policy green lighted in Seattle committee
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Old 09-22-19, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Not speeding... unless you're on a bicycle and running flat out to keep up with the lights.

But, in cars, say there is a set of a half dozen lights in a row, all timed.

There are two ways to deal with them. One method is to mash the pedal the the metal as soon as the light turns green... then when one reaches the next red, slam on the brakes... Repeat... and Repeat....

The other way is light timing. Try to adjust one's speed so that one arrives at the intersection still moving just as the light turns green. And, thus hits the intersection moving. Doing so may well be faster than the first method, and more fuel efficient as one doesn't have the rapid acceleration and slamming on the brakes.

However, the light timing also has the inherent risk that one may enter the intersection at moderate speed before the intersection completely clears of cross traffic.

Doing so in bike lanes can also be inherently risky for bicycles as there is the temptation to pass cars on the right.
I recall the lights on a certain main downtown street in San Diego were set for 22 MPH... which, given traffic, was about right. G street, to 94 east, if I remember correctly.

Of course, now and then, some idiot tries them at 44MPH...
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Old 09-22-19, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Except for buses, and the rare car pool... there is NO REASON, WHAT SO EVER to give single passenger cars priority over single people walking.

Well, maybe one reason... exhaust pollution... but I'd rather have pollution free cars... of course dunderhead Trump doesn't care about air pollution, as exemplified by his recent attact on car regs in CA. Burn baby burn. 🙄
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Old 09-22-19, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Hmmm, I was thinking of the idea of giving a cross walk signal BEFORE giving a green light. Give the pedestrians time to get into the middle of the road before allowing cars to start moving.

As far as Pedestrian Priority. I don't know. It is complicated.

It makes some sense to bunch pedestrians, as it takes about the same amount of time for 10 pedestrians to cross the street as 1.

I don't care about waiting as long as cars are moving.

What is annoying is off-hours, when one hits the button, then waits 5 minutes without a car in sight just for the light to change.

We have a number of flashing light crosswalks that have popped up.

https://www.google.com/maps/@44.0456...7i13312!8i6656

As soon as one pushes the button, flashing lights go off everywhere. There should be a 2 or 3 second delay before giving the cross walk signal, but I'm not sure there is.

Once pedestrians have cleared the crosswalk, it is legal to proceed with caution.
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Old 09-22-19, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Except for buses, and the rare car pool... there is NO REASON, WHAT SO EVER to give single passenger cars priority over single people walking.

Well, maybe one reason... exhaust pollution... but I'd rather have pollution free cars... of course dunderhead Trump doesn't care about air pollution, as exemplified by his recent attact on car regs in CA. Burn baby burn. 🙄
And it's against our stated priorities.

Apparently I shouldn't talk about Trump outside P&R or I'll trigger someone.
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Old 09-22-19, 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Except for buses, and the rare car pool... there is NO REASON, WHAT SO EVER to give single passenger cars priority over single people walking.

Well, maybe one reason... exhaust pollution... but I'd rather have pollution free cars... of course dunderhead Trump doesn't care about air pollution, as exemplified by his recent attact on car regs in CA. Burn baby burn. ��
I generally agree in concept, yet the image that comes to mind is complete gridlock in an urban area when pedestrians are interacting with vehicles and pedestrians are not required at times to yield to vehicles. There’s a reason there are traffic control devices that pedestrians need to follow in what is know as controlled intersections. I often times think NYC could solve all its budget issues by issuing tickets to jaywalkers in Manhattan. That said, I personally feel that private vehicles have no business being in many areas of Manhattan during most of the work day. Possibly the upcoming congestion pricing being enacted will change people’s mindset of vehicle use.
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Old 09-22-19, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
I generally agree in concept, yet the image that comes to mind is complete gridlock in an urban area when pedestrians are interacting with vehicles and pedestrians are not required at times to yield to vehicles. There’s a reason there are traffic control devices that pedestrians need to follow in what is know as controlled intersections. I often times think NYC could solve all its budget issues by issuing tickets to jaywalkers in Manhattan. That said, I personally feel that private vehicles have no business being in many areas of Manhattan during most of the work day. Possibly the upcoming congestion pricing being enacted will change people’s mindset of vehicle use.
Several world cities are now using congestion fees and core pedestrian only malls as a solution to the "one person per car" debacle. The whole idea that it takes a 4000 lb machine to deliver a 200 lb person to a destination not more than 15-20 miles away is ludicrous. The average commute is less than 15 miles. Yet, so much energy, and space is wasted, so individuals can arrive in their personal luxury couch. (yes, couch, not coach, although coach does apply too)
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Old 09-22-19, 04:52 PM
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I wonder how many of the advanced telematics systems would be capable of detecting drunk drivers.

Perhaps monitor stops by GPS at bars and liquor stores.

Then pick up differences in driving habits as the person leaves the bars. Problems keeping it between the lines. Changes in speed (faster, or often slower), etc.
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