Many insurance companies offer a telematics device for monitoring mileage and driver behavior. All of these record something known as “acceleration events”. The devices are set up so that in the event of acceleration-or deceleration-event that goes beyond their internal speed-change limits, some of your policy discount is subtracted. Now, if a person is driving carelessly and causes an accident because of the careless driving behavior, a remedy is to track it and apply a penalty.
On its face, this sounds like a reasonable thing to monitor. After all, how many of us spend good money on tires, brakes, transmissions and other vehicle maintenance will deliberately operate them in an abusive manner? Reckless driving is typically a teenage driving habit that can and does lead to crashes, injuries, and death. A telematics device that can report such careless driving may have a good purpose.
I suspect that the way they are programmed currently is done to limit the premium discount we could achieve through miles driven.
My own experience with these devices is reflective of what I discovered with online complaints from not one but every insurance company that offers a telematics device. I operated a telematics device for 30 days. Within those 30 days I was penalized when I approached a stop sign, lightly applied the brakes, and when the car came to a complete halt the device would make a slight beeping sound. An acceleration event! Avoiding this would be very difficult to do consistently because no matter how gently you slow down, when the vehicle stops completely there’s always a slight rocking motion that occurs as the brakes completely grab hold and stop the tire rotation. There is nothing dangerous about this. Not reckless, not anything. It’s no more than an excuse by the insurance companies to deny you a premium reduction.