Staying safe on the road – now there’s an app for that

24 March 2015 Nathan van Rooyen, Santam
Nathan van Rooyen, Santam’s head of digital marketing.

Nathan van Rooyen, Santam’s head of digital marketing.

With the Easter holidays just around the corner, you may be planning a road trip on our country’s busy roads. To give your friends and family peace of mind that you’ll arrive at your destination safely, leading short-term insurer Santam has launched a one-of-a-kind new app to enable them to keep track of your progress.

The innovative Santam App with Be Safe functionality allows you to select friends and family to virtually accompany you on your journey from start to end, and be notified once you have reached your destination. The app will also send them alerts via SMS if you are delayed for some reason.

So how does it work? The app allows you to choose your activity – are you driving, cycling, walking or running? You then enter your starting point and your destination, followed by the estimated duration of your trip. Lastly, you can select multiple ‘guardians’ – the friends and family you wish to monitor your progress. They will receive a notification that your journey has started, and will be able to view your journey on a live map on their smartphones. If a guardian you have chosen does not have a smartphone, he or she will receive notifications via SMS.

“It is entirely up to you whether and when you want someone to act as your guardian, and you are in control of the process,” says Nathan van Rooyen, Santam’s head of digital marketing. “If you no longer wish your movements to be monitored, you can terminate the process by sending a notification to this effect to your guardians. It’s a cross platform app, so your guardians can be on Android or Apple iPhone devices to see your progress live on a map. Friends and family with other platforms and devices can also act as guardians, but will only receive SMS notications indicating a start and end of your journey.

“However, it can give both you and your friends and family immense peace of mind knowing you can be assisted if necessary while on the road. The app can also be used in a variety of other situations – to keep an eye on you when you are out and about, enjoying your favourite form of exercise, or are on neighbourhood watch. You can also keep track of your children, whether they’ve gone camping or are on a road trip to the matric rage.”

The Accident and Incident Reporter, another feature on the Santam App with Be Safe, will guide you through a simple, step-by-step process to report, document and submit an accident or incident report directly to your insurer, all within a matter of minutes. You can scan the barcode of your vehicle licence disc (and those of other vehicles involved), record audio statements, take and store incident photos, find the nearest police station, and locate the closest Santam drive-in centre to start the repair process.
“When you are involved in an accident, you may be too flustered to remember all the information that will be required by your insurer. The Santam App with Be Safe will ensure a structured process, so your insurance claim is one less thing to worry about,” says Van Rooyen.

The app also has a request-a-quote function for effortless quotations as well as a directory to locate brokers in your area.

The good news is that the app is free, and it’s for everyone, not only Santam clients. If you are not a Santam policyholder and you are involved in an accident, you can still email all the relevant information from the app to your own insurer. The Santam App with Be Safe is available for download on Android and iPhone devices.

Van Rooyen says the new app is an extension of Santam’s promise of insurance good and proper. “It is just another way that we help South Africans to be safe out there and enjoy the freedom of knowing someone can assist you if required. And what better time to launch it than just before the holidays, giving everyone peace of mind that their friends and family members will be safe when on the road or just enjoying our great outdoors,” he says.

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