PHYSIOLOGICAL REACTIONS OF DRIVERS AS INDICATORS OF ROAD TRAFFIC DEMAND

Sixty drivers, all accustomed to a certain make of car, performed test drives along a certain test road. A digital tape recorder was used for real-time recording of the driver's physiological characteristics (electrodermal response, heart rate, and muscle activity), steering, and braking; the vehicle response (accelerations in three directions, velocity, and distance traveled); and traffic events as coded by the experimenter. The characteristics of the test road were measured in the field. Average responses were calculated for the test road, and significant covariations were demonstrated by using the physiological measures as the dependent variable and vehicle behavior on the road as the independent variable. It was also found that the difficulty of a traffic event affects both the driver's brake use and physiological responses. Stress- inducing road characteristics are downhill grades and short sight distances. It is suggested that the driver's capacity to process information varies flexibly as task demand changes. Sudden increases in task demand can be leveled out by modeling the road environment, and this makes the driver more competent at dealing with hazardous situations.

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 1-17
  • Monograph Title: Driver performance studies
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00097203
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0309023777
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Sep 30 1975 12:00AM