Ingenie, an insurer that specialises in cover for young drivers aged 17 to 25, has devised a new way to cut potential risks posed by its less experienced drivers.
The firm has established a ‘Driver Behaviour Unit’ (DBU), which has reputedly reduced the number of dangerous driving incidents by 21 per cent. It’s staffed by people with psychology backgrounds and is designed to coach younger drivers to take fewer risks.
Each car insured on the scheme receives a telematics unit that monitors the driver’s behaviour. Poor driving triggers warning messages, and good driving grants discounts on insurance premiums.
The DBU monitors feedback from the telematics unit, looking for drivers who receive ‘highly dangerous driving’ warnings. Ingenie says that only one per cent of its drivers receive a ‘black’ message each month, but these drivers are three times more likely to have a crash. The DBU contacts these drivers and offers one-to-one coaching.
“The first thing we do is establish whether the driver is aware they’ve been driving dangerously,” says James Burton, one of the DBU analysts. “Secondly, we help them to recognise their behaviour is a problem – that it could seriously hurt or kill them or someone else, or that they could have their policy cancelled and become uninsurable. In many cases, they haven’t considered the consequences.
“We never lecture. We just help them to identify the motivations behind their behaviour and then encourage them to think how to make positive changes.”
Ingenie claims that in 90 per cent of cases, the drivers make a notable improvement within 30 days.
Richard King, Ingenie CEO, says: “A very small number need that extra bit of support. The DBU shows that it’s possible to save lives by nipping dangerous behaviour in the bud.”