Car crashes in the future: insurers will win on mobile
By Ali Nawab, Chief Product Officer at Sentiance
Here is what will happen in the future when a car crash happens:
The customer’s mobile phone will automatically detect the car crash, check with the occupants if they need medical or towing help, and then inform the insurance company with details of the crash for claims.
Below is what actually happens today:
Before Covid, my spouse and our kids were on their morning school run. As they climbed a hill, they noticed cars stopped ahead. They braked quickly and came to a halt just inches from the car ahead of them. A car behind them did not.
Two cars behind, a speeding driver rammed into a row of stopped cars at 100km/hr. Miraculously, no one was seriously injured. I’ve detailed what happened next to give you an idea of what happens in a typical car crash.
My spouse called me and said they were ok, and that the car had taken some damage and told me about her location. When I pulled up, police and emergency services had already arrived and they were to take statements from five drivers & two passengers.
About an hour later, we called our insurance company, who had no idea a crash had happened. They politely asked a lot of questions about speed, the direction of travel, the health of driver & passengers, and admission of fault.
What happened next was that our car was towed to a garage by a mechanic that was not on the insurance company’s panel, and we started a month-long process to file & process our claim.
For the next 30 days, we were unclear if we were at fault, or if this large claim was going to be added to our insurance profile.
At the end of it all, the police report showed my spouse had stopped fully before the crash and was not at fault. But the weird thing was that this information got lost in the communication lines between the insurance claims & adjustment departments, so our premium was increased.
When we called the insurance company back with a copy of the police report, they apologized for their error and fixed our insurance rating again.
“Every touch-point with a customer is an opportunity to build or erode trust with the customer.”
Our product works directly on mobile phones, and can immediately reach out to confirm if the driver needs assistance. It can also notify the family, emergency responders, and the insurance company.
Family members are notified immediately, that their worst fears have not come true. They can also be given more information such as the car is moving again, and the driver has been talking on their phone since the car crash, and he/she is ok.
The insurance company is notified immediately. Instead of being an interrogator desperate to fill out an Electronic First Notice of Loss Report, the agent can see a visualized report of the crash with answers to the first 5-10 questions.
Improve customer experience & reduce costs
This way, the insurance company helps the policyholder navigate this time with the most empathy.
Insurance company systems are focused on reducing fraud, and this solution helps reduce fraud by delivering pre & post-crash details, easily visualized & run-through outlier detection.
What happens when a car crash is detected?
Here is a typical process that follows with our mobile-based solution.
Real-time car crash detection
When a car crash is detected, both driver & the insurance company get a notification with clear next steps.
- The driver can dismiss the notification (in the rare case that it’s a false positive or a narrow miss). This already would save the insurance company over $20 per incorrect call.
- Since the insurance company already knows the crash happened, the direction of travel, the speed, they can jump directly to make sure that everyone in the car is safe.
- Insurers working with partners (emergency services, towing company) to offer help in time when their policyholders need it the most.
Enhanced fraud detection
A big issue here is that insurance companies have to identify fraudulent claims during their intake process. According to the study from the Insurance Research Council (IRC), fraud adds up to 17% to auto insurance injury claims. Insurers, therefore, have to judge each response carefully to ensure there are no apparent gaps in the story.
People who just go through a near-death experience aren’t particularly attuned to answering questions perfectly. This can help move the conversation to a more empathetic place by letting the software do most of the essential data gathering.
Detailed crash reports
Another big issue is that many claims are easy and straightforward, while some require more digging. Today, insurance companies don’t have good ways to triage all the incoming claims. They pick the easy ones, and the extreme ones are dealt with by an adjustor, ending up taking a lot of time.
With our mobile crash detection solution, it can automatically create the crash report, including crash details, location, injury estimations and more.
Smartphone-based crash detection solution
Developed in partnership with Autoliv, our crash detector works with mobile phones and can be rolled out to an entire policy base at least 10 times faster than traditional telematics dongles. A clear advantage in terms of near-zero installation and servicing costs. Being mobile phone-based, it can better manage privacy and personalization to the customers’ needs.
Our goal is to learn from car crashes, predict them and prevent them by combining our crash detection and driver coaching products, which can help families with safety. The insurance companies can benefit from lower claims, reduced fraud, and increased empathy for their customers.
Read the original blog post and Download your free copy of the crash detection infographic here.
Sentiance is an intelligence-driven data science and behavior change company. We turn motion data into contextual insights and use behavioral change techniques to personalize engagement for safer and sustainable mobility and wellbeing experiences.
Sentiance empowers the world’s leading companies to create personalized engagement services and products through intelligent contextual recommenders, delivering technology for a new human-centric economy where the user is in control of data.