Driving Performance While Using a Mobile Phone: A Simulation Study of Greek Professional Drivers

The current study aims to assess the driving performance of professional drivers while using a mobile phone. A sample of 50 male professional drivers participated in the study. The sample was drawn conveniently from the professional drivers’ registries and the main taxi ranks. The inclusion criteria were: (a) age above 18 years, (b) possession of a driving license, (c) sufficient reading, writing, and communicating skills, (d) informed consent prior to participation. Laboratory tests were conducted using the VS500M driving simulator manufactured by Virage Simulation Inc. The intervention involved different tasks/assignments: (a) driving without using a mobile phone (Control time), (b) driving while having a conversation on the mobile phone, (Task_1), (c) driving while reading out loud text messages (Task_2) and, (d) driving while texting (Task_3). Differences in the driving performance between the control time and the time with assignments, were examined. The participants were evaluated on the followings outcome measures: (a) variation of the steering position per second, (b) following distance per second, (c) variation of the lateral lane position per second, and (d) sum of squared acceleration per second. The analysis indicated that “variation of the steering position per second” was significantly affected by “text-message reading” [t(50) = -5.443; p < 0.0001] and “texting” [t(50) = -5.442; p < 0.0001]. A significant main effect was observed in terms of the “following distance per second” and the “variation of the lateral lane position per second” for all the three mobile phone assignments. Lastly, the “sum of squared acceleration per second” was significantly decreased during conversation on the phone [t(50) = 2.713; p = 0.009] as well as during texting [t(50) = 3.428; p = 0.001] as compared with the control time. The study is among the few existing experimental studies in a country with one of the highest road fatalities in Europe but with limited evidence on road traffic behavior. This study could guide the design of large-scale simulation studies aiming to explore the impact of mobile phone on driving behavior.

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  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01597743
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 14 2016 10:41AM