Telematics innovation comes as rising claim volumes seen across the insurance industry.
San Antonio, CA /PRNewswire/ - Today, USAA announced it is among the first auto insurance carriers to implement crash detection technology, an innovation that simplifies and expedites the claims process. This technology comes at a critical time as auto accidents have surged past pre-pandemic levels, exacerbating supply chain issues and delays being felt by consumers across the nation.
The crash detection technology, integrated in USAA's SafePilot® app, has generated more than 36,000 crash notifications since its November 2021 launch. The technology leverages smart phone sensors within the app to detect a possible collision and prompts the member to verify if an accident has occurred. Once verified, the app immediately offers helpful information, including safety guidance for the accident scene, the option to file a claim via a streamlined process, or the ability to dial 911 directly from the app.
"Ultimately this comes down to making sure our members are safe and helping them get back on their feet faster," says Luke Harris, USAA's Vice President of Innovation. "We're constantly looking for innovative ways to make our members' lives easier, something that USAA has been focused on for over 100 years. By using telematics and crash detection technology, we can provide a more seamless member experience and faster resolution to claims."
Collision Claims Surging to Pre-Pandemic Levels
As innovations in telematics improve the claims process, the insurance industry continues to deal with an increase in volume, severity and cost of auto accidents. USAA handled 500,000 more claims in 2021 than in 2020, a trend felt broadly as pandemic restrictions were lifted and more cars returned to the roads.
The severity of accidents is also on the rise. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently announced a 16-year high in traffic fatalities, raising concerns of increasing danger on roadways. With an increase in severe accidents, the cost of repairs has also risen significantly. In 2021, USAA saw collision repair costs rise 38% over 2020 and is currently on pace to see an additional 30% increase in 2022. Additionally, as inflation has impacted the price of goods and services, insurers are seeing increases in the cost to repair vehicles stemming from supply chain issues and parts and labor shortages.
Among these changes, telematics-based insurance plans have surged in popularity with USAA members as they search for ways to save money on their insurance premiums:
- SafePilot®, USAA's behavior-based insurance (BBI) plan, rewards safe-driving behaviors with premium discounts. Members who enroll are eligible for initial policy discounts up to 10% for signing up, and continued policy discounts up to 30% for safe driving behaviors. Driver enrollment is more than 200% higher than in 2021 for SafePilot® which is now available in 43 states plus Washington D.C., with plans to expand to nearly all states in 2023.
- USAA is also now offering pay-as-you-drive, a usage-based insurance (UBI) option that determines rates based on how much and how safely you drive. USAA acquired the product from Noblr, Inc. in 2021, and it is currently available in 10 states, with plans to expand to the majority of states in 2023. This product is becoming popular for members now working from home or who use other forms of transportation (i.e., bike, public transportation) as a primary means of travel.
To learn more about these offerings, visit USAA.com/drive.
Founded in 1922 by a group of military officers, USAA is among the leading providers of insurance, banking, and investment and retirement solutions to more than 13 million members of the U.S. military, veterans who have honorably served and their families. Headquartered in San Antonio, USAA has offices in eight U.S. cities and three overseas locations and employs more than 38,000 people worldwide. Each year, the company contributes to national and local nonprofits in support of military families and communities where employees live and work. For more information about USAA, follow us on Facebook or Twitter (@USAA), or visit usaa.com.