DEKRA expert tip:


Already available for most Android smartphones – also on iPhones as of iOS 11.


We ensure safety.

Our mission is to be the global partner for a safer world – at work, at home and, needless to say, on the roads. This is what our safety and test experts are working on every day.

Our current road safety projects are bundled up on our DEKRA Roadsafety platform. However, safe technology and complying with important standards and guidelines only go so far in helping to achieve “Vision Zero” on the roads – this is because road users are increasingly putting themselves at risk. Every year, more and more accidents are being caused by people using smartphones in traffic. It’s time to take action for educating people about smarter mobility.

Being clever than only smart.

Smarter than your smartphone:
Dos and don’ts in traffic.


Activate driving mode while driving.

01. Do!

Activate driving mode while driving.

From iOS 11 onwards, iPhones can also recognize when someone is driving a car. It switches automatically into “Do Not Disturb While Driving” mode and does not show notifications or incoming messages. Senders are notified that the recipient is currently driving and unable to respond. Smartphone users who are in the car as passengers can tap on the “I’m not driving” button and carry on using their iPhone in the usual way. Android smartphones already have similar functions or will do shortly.


Too high a cost.

02. Don't!

Too high a cost.

The highest costs incurred by accidents are in the form of injuries or death. Such cases can not only lead to prison sentences but also to damages and compensation. And insurance companies frequently reject claims for the driver’s own vehicle if they caused the accident themselves by using a mobile phone.

If you are holding a mobile phone when driving, you are in breach of section 23 of the German Road Traffic Act (StVO) and risk a fine of €100 and a traffic violation point on your record.


Motor on = phone off.

03. Do!

Motor on = phone off.

As soon as the engine is running, your phone should be taboo. Right? Not quite: You are allowed to speak on the phone while driving − as long as you use a hands-free system. This can be a permanently installed solution in your vehicle or a Bluetooth headset. However, once the engine has been switched on, the phone may no longer be operated unless via voice control. To be on the safe side, it is best not to touch your phone once behind the wheel: Depending on how it is used, the risk of injury can increase by as much as 20 times!


“Flying blind”

04. Don't!

“Flying blind”

Would you intentionally close your eyes when driving? Absolutely not! But when you fiddle around with your phone, this has exactly the same effect. For example, if you glance at your phone for just three seconds while driving 130 km/h (80 mph) on the highway, you will be “flying blind” for as much as 108.30 meters (118.40 yards). It takes an average of 7 seconds to receive and confirm a message – meaning that you travel 253 meters (277 yards) with your eyes off the road.


Legal but still dangerous...

05. Do!

Legal but still dangerous...

Under German law, it is permissible to use a phone if it is secured in a cradle. However, don’t overdo it or you can expect a fine. People typing on a mobile phone (e.g. text messages) face the same fine as those caught talking on the phone when driving: a €100 fine and a traffic violation point on their record. And if their actions lead to an accident, they even face 3 to 5 years in jail.


Even dangerous on foot.

06. Don't!

Even dangerous on foot.

People who walk and talk on the phone tend to slow down and soon get in other people’s way. Researchers from Ohio State University have even discovered that walking while on the phone is dangerous – the number of pedestrians who have injured themselves while talking on the phone has doubled within the space of 6 years. So our tip: Stop walking and stand aside while talking on the phone.


Don’t block out the sound of life!

07. Don't!

Don’t block out the sound of life!

Talking on the phone, chatting and writing text messages is dangerous – but even listening to your favorite songs on headphones can put you at risk. If your music is so loud that you can’t hear ambulance sirens or the warning bell of trams on the street, you are living dangerously. In recent years, there has been a marked increase in accidents where pedestrians or cyclists wearing headphones have been injured or even killed. And even when the music isn’t loud, it has still been shown to reduce people’s reaction times!


Sound advice for cyclists.

08. Do!

Sound advice for cyclists.

Many people are not aware that it is not only forbidden to use your smartphone behind the wheel but also when cycling. At €55, the fine for cyclists is only half as high as for motorists. And cyclists do not risk any traffic violation points either. But at the end of the day, it is not about money or traffic violation points but about your safety on the roads. And the simple truth is that using a phone is a distraction. So be sure to keep both hands on the handlebars and both eyes on the road.


Generation “SMOMBIE”

09. Don't!

Generation “SMOMBIE”

Do you know what a “SMOMBIE” is? A person who walks through the streets staring at their smartphone like a zombie. This is not only a dangerous problem but a widespread one as well. So that public transport companies have even launched awareness campaigns and some cities have even introduced traffic lights on the ground.

DEKRA mobile app

The app for additional safety.

When used responsibly, smartphones can be extremely useful in traffic situations. The DEKRA mobile app provides important tips on accidents and first aid measures. As well as this, the app contains lots of useful information and checklists on various car-related topics.

All the features at a glance:

  • Accident Helper: Includes tips on what to do at the scene of an accident, step-by-step “first-aid” instructions, instructions for placing people in the recovery position, preparing accident reports
  • Infocards: European traffic laws, vehicle inspections, child safety belts, tips for transporting children, emissions stickers, daytime running lights
  • Checklists: Holiday journeys, buying second-hand cars, preparing your car for the winter, vehicle roadworthiness inspections …

DEKRA locations

the smart way to get to DEKRA.

Having the right attitude and using your head in traffic situations benefits us all. It is also useful to know that DEKRA is located not only in Germany but also in over 50 countries all over the world.