Computer Training Program Improves Teen Drivers’ Attention to the Road [Traffic Tech]
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Computer Training Program Improves Teen Drivers’ Attention to the Road [Traffic Tech]

Filetype[PDF-635.84 KB]

  • English

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      Research indicates that when completing in-vehicle tasks such as looking at a road map, teen drivers are much more likely than are experienced drivers to look away from the road for long periods. Other studies indicate that glances away from the road that last longer than 2 seconds increase crash risk. The combined findings suggest that teens have an elevated risk due to visual distraction. Simply training drivers never to look inside the vehicle could be unsafe because some tasks, such as glances at gauges and mirrors might actually serve to decrease crash risk. In addition, given the large number of devices in modern vehicles, e.g., radio/entertainment systems, and cellular phones, it would be naive to think that drivers could completely ignore distraction when driving. Training that teaches novice drivers to distribute their attention safely may be a useful countermeasure for crashes resulting from visual distraction. The current effort included three studies that developed and evaluated the Forward Concentration and Attention Learning (FOCAL) training program. The first study developed and tested the effectiveness of the FOCAL training program using a computer, while the second and third studies tested the impact of FOCAL on performance in real traffic and in a high-fidelity driving simulator.
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