ALCOHOL IMPAIRMENT OF PERFORMANCE ON STEERING AND DISCRETE TASKS IN A DRIVING SIMULATOR. PART I: EFFECTS OF TASK LOADING. PART II: MODERATE VERSUS HEAVY DRINKERS

In this program a simplified laboratory simulator was developed to test two types of tasks used in driving on the open road: a continuous "steering task" to regulate against gust induced disturbances and an intermittent "discrete response task" requiring detection, scanning, recognition, and motor response typical of, for example, horn or brake operations. The development and details of this simulator, the many behavioral and performance measures, and some basic effects of blood alcohol concentrations of up to 0.11 BAC on a mixed group of 18 moderate and heavy drinkers is given in Part I of this report. Part I concentrates on the differences between the driving and discrete tasks both alone and combined, to establish the foundations for Part II. Part II covers the main objective of this program, the differences in alcohol impairment of driving performance between "moderate" and "heavy" drinkers. This objective was successfully met using a cross-section of 20 typical licensed drivers ranging in age from 21-65 years, 10 of each type of drinking habit. For delected cases, eye-point-of-regard measures were taken which gave new insights into the detection and recognition aspects of the discrete tasks. Blood alcohol concentrations equivalent to around 0.11 percent of moderate drinkers and 0.16 for heavy drinkers were used, with distinct and self-consistent differences noted between drinker types.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Systems Technology, Incorporated

    13766 South Hawthorne Boulevard
    Hawthorne, CA  USA  90250
  • Authors:
    • JEX, H R
    • Allen, R W
    • DiMarco, R J
    • McRuer, D T
  • Publication Date: 1974-12

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 63 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00081471
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Highway Safety Research Institute
  • Report/Paper Numbers: DOT HS-801 302 Final Rpt.
  • Contract Numbers: DOT-HS-227-2-388
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Apr 8 1975 12:00AM