Evaluating the Effectiveness of Worker Safety Vests on Drivers’ Visual Attention

Vehicular traffic in construction work zones presents multiple threats to worker safety on roadway projects. One method to ensure workers are seen by passing vehicles is for workers to don high-visibility apparel. Although research suggests that safety vests may increase the conspicuity of construction workers, no research specifically examines the effects of the presence of safety vests on driver’s visual attention in construction work zones. To test this, 16 participants were fitted with wearable eye tracking glasses and were asked to navigate a series of simulated construction work zones on an interactive driving simulator. Each participant was randomly assigned to two simulated environments, one in which workers were wearing safety vests and one in which workers were not. A paired-sample t test was used to test for a significant difference between groups in the mean number of construction workers gazed upon by the participants. The results suggest that workers who don safety apparel in construction work zones are more frequently observed by drivers in simulated environments. This research adds to the body of knowledge by empirically validating the use of high visibility apparel and builds a framework for employing eye tracking technology in both simulated and real world environments.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: pp 105-113
  • Monograph Title: Construction Research Congress 2020: Safety, Workforce, and Education

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01767556
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780784482872
  • Files: TRIS, ASCE
  • Created Date: Nov 9 2020 3:03PM