Novel telematics innovation developed to stem the increase in learner drivers involved in road collisions and fatalities
An Irish entrepreneur has launched a driver-monitoring system and app to address issues surrounding the behaviour of young and inexperienced drivers on the road.
Targify is the first of its kind on the Irish market, and has been developed in order to enable the parents of young drivers to monitor their teens driving behaviour, in the hope that this will curb bad practices such as speeding, sudden braking and harsh cornering, and will ultimately lead to safer driving and safer road usage for all.
Greg McGarry, founder of Targify, has extensive experience of providing telematics expertise to the motor service industry, and spoke about how and why Targify came to fruition.
"According to the most recent CSO statistics, there are 4,123 licenced drivers in Longford between the age of 16-25 and as the parents of these drivers will know - how these young men and women behave on the road is a source of worry for Mams and Dads throughout the country. Are they driving carefully or dangerously? Are they keeping within the speed limit or going too fast? Are they hitting the pedal too hard or driving responsibly? Parents simply can't be sure, and that's a big worry."
The Targify app will let parents know in real-time how their children are driving.
Mr. McGarry continued:
"For the first time, parents will be able to independently buy an inexpensive product that can give them real-time feedback on their son's or daughter's driving and possibly save their lives."
How it works:
- a tiny device is plugged into the car and an app on the user's phone will tell them if there's excessive speed or acceleration, harsh braking or dangerous cornering;
- it also gives a driving score so that improvements can be monitored on a weekly basis;
- with its location data, it can also be used as a tracking device if the car is stolen.
Young drivers are the most vulnerable on Irish roads. Between 2014 and 2017, 47 learner drivers were involved in fatal collisions, an average of almost one per month. In addition, the Road Safety Authority, in its most recent report, stated that those between the age of 16-25 were the highest risk age group in 2017, while the previous year they were the highest risk age group of all road fatalities.
Mr. McGarry says being able to avail of this technology independent of the motor insurance industry is important, as young drivers can use it to improve their driving without fear of any infractions hiking their premiums for years to come,
"Parents do want to keep an eye of the behaviour of their new drivers, but there is a worry that if data is shared with insurers it will somehow be held against them in the future. With Targify, they can monitor and almost literally steer the improvement of their N-plate drivers at a critical time of their driving lives."
Mr. McGarry said the system is a redeployment of existing technology currently in operation across the globe. "We had already supplied this to insurers around the world, but we have made some modifications and enhancements so that it can be used on a more individual basis - by the parents or guardians of young drivers."
Targify costs €99.99 plus a monthly subscription fee of €14.99. Parents can easily fit the device themselves and then recieve the data on the Targify app.