The perils of perfect performance; considering the effects of introducing autonomous vehicles on rates of car vs cyclist conflict

How humans will adapt and respond to the introduction of autonomous vehicles (AVs) is uncertain. This study used an agent-based model to explore how AVs, human-operated vehicles, and cyclists might interact based on the introduction of flawlessly performing AVs. Under two separate experimental conditions, results of experiment 1 showed that, despite no conflicts occurring between cyclists and AVs, modelled conflicts among human-operated cars and cyclists increased with the introduction of AVs due to cyclists’ adjusted expectations of the behaviour and capability of human-operated and autonomous cars. Similarly, when human-operated cars were replaced with AVs over time in experiment 2, cyclist conflict rates did not follow a linear reduction consistent with the replacement rate but decreased more slowly in the early stages of replacement before 50% substitution. It is concluded that, although flawlessly performing AVs might reduce total conflicts, the introduction of AVs into a transport system where humans adjust to the behaviour and risk presented by AVs could create new sources of error that offset some of AVs assumed safety benefits. Practitioner summary: Ergonomics is an applied science that studies interactions between humans and other elements of a system, including non-human agents. Agent-Based Modelling (ABM) provides an approach for exploring dynamic and emergent interactions between agents. In this article, the authors demonstrate ABM through an analysis of how cyclists and pedestrians might interact with Autonomous Vehicles (AVs) in future road transport systems. Abbreviations: ABM: agent-based model; AV: autonomous vehicle; ODD; overview, design concepts and details; RW: rescorla-wagner

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    • © 2020 Jason Thompson et al. Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group 2020. Abstract reprinted with permission of Taylor & Francis.
  • Authors:
    • Thompson, Jason
    • Read, Gemma J M
    • Wijnands, Jasper S
    • Salmon, Paul M
  • Publication Date: 2020-8


  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01748631
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 30 2020 3:01PM