Everyone knows you shouldn’t text and drive. Nor should you play Pokemon Go (do people still do that) or check email or any other distracting activity on your phone while driving. As if endangering yourself and other people wasn’t incentive enough to keep your eyes on the road, distracted drivers also just cost 4,200 people their jobs.
State Farm is the country’s biggest home and auto insurer, and in 2016 they posted a $7 billion underwriting loss on auto insurance policies. State Farm isn’t alone, though. Allstate, Berkshire Hathaway, and Hartford Financial have all had to pay out more over the last few years, with blame directed at an increase in accidents due to mobile device distractions, though increased driving and higher repair costs haven’t helped.
The companies have looked into other ways to make up the shortfall, but it’s hard to do without significantly raising rates. State Farm will be shuttering 11 locations from California to Florida.
So next time you think about picking up your phone while driving, don’t just think about how you could seriously hurt or injure yourself and others, but consider that you might be putting someone out of work on top of that.