The impact of verbal interaction on driver lateral control: an experimental assessment

2013-03-07T15:19:38Z (GMT) by Nikolaos Gkikas John H. Richardson
Driver distraction is acknowledged as one of the key contributors to driver accidents (Treat, J.R., et al., 197747. Treat, J. R. 1977. Tri-level study of the causes of traffic accidents (No. DOT-HS-034-535-77-TAC(1)), Bloomington, IN: Institute for Research in Public Safety – Indiana University. View all references. Tri-level study of the causes of traffic accidents (No. DOT-HS-034‐535‐77-TAC(1)). Bloomington, IN: Institute for Research in Public Safety – Indiana University; Knipling, R.R., et al., 199328. Knipling, R. R. 1993. Assessment of IVHS countermeasures for collision avoidance: Rear-end crashes (No. DOT HS 807 995), Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. View all references. Assessment of IVHS countermeasures for collision avoidance: Rear-end crashes (No. DOT HS 807 995). Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). As driving is mainly considered a visual task (Wierwille, W.W., 199353. Wierwille, W. W. 1993. “Visual and manual demands of in-car controls and displays”. In Automotive ergonomics, Edited by: Peakock, B. and Karwowski, W. 229–320. London: Taylor and Francis. View all references. Visual and manual demands of in-car controls and displays. In: B. Peakock and W. Karwowski, eds. Automotive ergonomics. London: Taylor and Francis, 229–320) the use of auditory channels for interacting with intelligent vehicle systems has been suggested as a solution to possible visual overload. This article presents two studies which assess the potential impact of distraction caused by verbal interaction on the driving task. The first study used a low-cost, game-based, simulation and the second study used the same experimental design with a generic driving simulation, the Lane Change Task (Mattes, S., 2003. The lane change task as a tool for driver distraction evaluation. In: H. Strasser, H. Rascher, and H. Bubb, eds. Quality of work and products in enterprises of the future. Stuttgart: Ergonomia Verlag, 57–60). Twenty-four young adults, 12 males and 12 females, participated in the first study and 12 young adults, 6 males and 6 females, in the second study. Road departures, time/speed and subjective workload were the measures in the first study, while the second study used mean course-departure and subjective workload as dependent variables. The results indicated that game-based simulation can be a solution when realism is needed but resources are limited, and suggested that concurrent verbal interaction may impair lateral vehicle control.