Effects of Partial and Total Sleep Deprivation On Driving Performance
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Effects of Partial and Total Sleep Deprivation On Driving Performance

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  • Abstract:
    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that from 1989 through 1993, driver drowsiness/fatigue was a contributing factor in 100,000 crashes annually on U.S. highways. A recent study examined the effects of progressive sleep deprivation on driving performance to assess the rate of crashes and the changes in driving performance resulting from sleepiness. Because it would be unsafe to study this under real driving conditions, the high-fidelity highway driving simulator was used. A variety of measures, including continuous electroencephalogram (EEG) monitoring, videotaping, and analyses of driving performance data and questionnaire data were used to determine the effects of sleep deprivation on the driving performance of six men and six women aged 26-35. Highway safety variables, including number of crashes and number of lane excursions, were unacceptably high on day three after 36 hours of no sleep and on day four after 60 hours without sleep. More subtle measures of highway safety, such as speed and lateral placement variance, were also linked to sleep deprivation. Although some trends appeared, none of the variables were significantly affected by partial sleep deprivation, perhaps because participants were young, very healthy, and nonmedicated and because they had no sleep debt at the start of the study. A preliminary neural net analysis using the data collected is underway. If patterns of driving performance can be identified, it will lend strong support for the development of a neural net in-vehicle-based system for detecting and warning drowsy drivers of potential danger.
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    Public Roads Jan/Feb 1999 Vol. 62· No. 4;

    The original format of this document was an active HTML page(s). The Federal Highway Administration converted the HTML page(s) into an Adobe® Acrobat® PDF file to preserve and support reuse of the information it contained. Preservation Date: 2020-07-15. The intellectual content of this PDF is an authentic capture of the original HTML file. Hyperlinks and other functions of the HTML webpage may have been lost, and this version of the content may not fully work with screen reading software.

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