Driver distraction and inattention: What are they?

Report
Dr Craig Gordon
Alcohol Advisory Council of New Zealand
[email protected]
Presentation at AA Research Foundation Research Symposium,
5-6th September, 2011, Wellington, NZ
Acknowledgments
 Dr Michael Regan (IFSTTAR, France)
 Charlene Hallett (Ph.D. Student, IFSTTAR, France)
 Information presented based on:
Regan, M.A., Hallett, C., and Gordon, C. (2011). Driver distraction and
driver inattention: Definition, relationship and taxonomy. Accident
Analysis and Prevention, 43, pp. 1771-1781.
Gordon, C.P., and Regan, M.A. (2011). Driver distraction and inattention
and their role in crashes and critical events. In Regan, M.A., Victor, T.,
and Lee, J.D., (Eds.), Driver distraction and inattention: Advances in
research and countermeasures. England, UK: Ashgate (in preparation).
Outline
 Some definitions
 Examples of what studies include
 Some themes
 Possible framework
*Views expressed are those of the authors and not
necessarily Government policy
Inattention
 “diminished attention to activities critical for safe
driving in the absence of a competing activity” (Lee et
al, 2008)
 “improper selection of information, either a lack of
selection or the selection of irrelevant information”
(Victor et al, 2008)
 “when the driver’s mind has wandered from the
driving task for some non-compelling reason” (Craft
and Preslopsky, 2009)
Distraction
 “the diversion of attention away from activities critical
for safe driving towards a competing activity” (Lee et
al, 2008)
 “diversion of attention from driving, because driver is
temporarily focusing on an object, person, task or
event not related to driving” (Hedlund et al, 2005)
 “because some event, activity, object or person within
[or outside] his vehicle, compelled or induced the
driver’s shifting of attention away from the driving
task” (Treat, 1980)
NHTSA – GES, FARS, CDS
 Inattention includes





Driver distraction
‘Looked but didn’t see’ incidents
Fatigue
Emotional conditions
Physical conditions
 Driver distraction


Non-driving related secondary task activity, inside or outside
the vehicle
Internal thought – daydreaming, ‘lost in thought’
NHTSA (2010), Stutts et al (2005)
In-depth crash studies
 Use human error categories

Recognition error, decision error, performance error and nonperformance error
 Recognition error category




Inattention –non-driving related internal thought only
Driver distraction – inside and outside the vehicle, nondriving secondary task activity
Inadequate surveillance including ‘looked but didn’t see’
Does not include fatigue or emotional conditions
Treat (1980); LTCCS Study; NMVCCS Study;
Ascone, Lindsey & Varghese (2009)
In-depth crash studies (2)
 Inattention

interference from internal thought
 Attentional competition

interference between tasks relevant for driving
 Distraction

interference from secondary task non-driving related activity
Hoel et al (2010)
Naturalistic observational studies
 Inattention



Secondary task activity (not necessary for performance of
primary driving task)
Fatigued or drowsy driving
Driver related inattention to the forward roadway
(i.e. checking speedometer, blind spots, mirrors, observing traffic
during lane changes, looking for parking spots)

Non-specific eye glance away from the forward roadway
Dingus et al (2006); Klauer et al (2006)
International overview
 Driver distraction practice in 16 countries

Most countries exclude fatigue or sleeping as distracted
driving

4 countries include emotional distress/elation as distraction
BUT 11 countries exclude emotional distress/elation as
distracted driving (including NZ)

4 countries include emotional distress/elation as inattention
NHTSA (2010b)
Driver inattention
 Narrowly defined as ‘internal thought’,
or
 Covers many different elements that can include:







A lack of attention
Insufficient attention
Cursory attention
Selection of irrelevant information
Looking away from the forward roadway
Secondary task activities i.e. distraction
Drowsiness and other driver state
Driver distraction
 Key elements considered in defining distraction




Diversion of attention away from driving
Diverted towards a competing activity, event, person, object
 Can be inside or outside the vehicle
 Always involves non-driving related activity
 Some include driving-related activity
 Some exclude internal thought
Competing activity may compel or induce the driver to divert
attention
Implicit or explicit assumption that safe driving is adversely affected
Regan, Hallett & Gordon (2011)
Possible Framework
(Regan, Hallett and Gordon, 2011)
 Driver inattention
 “insufficient, or no attention, to activities critical for safe
driving”
 Broadly defined, consists of different types of
inattention

driver distraction is one form
Possible Framework
(Regan, Hallett and Gordon, 2011)
Driver
Inattention
Restricted
Misprioritised
Neglected
Cursory
i.e. microsleeps,
change
blindness
i.e. focusing on
aspect/s of
driving
i.e. does not
attend to critical
activity
i.e. hurried or
cursory
scanning
Diverted
(Distraction)
Driver diverted attention
(Regan, Hallett and Gordon, 2011)
 Driver diverted attention – akin to driver distraction
 “The diversion of attention away from activities critical
for safe driving toward a competing activity, which
may result in insufficient or no attention to activities
critical for safe driving”
Driver Diverted Attention
(Regan, Hallett and Gordon, 2011)
Driver diverted
attention
Non-driving
related
i.e. competing
secondary task
activity
Drivingrelated
includes
internal
thought
i.e. less-critical
competing
activity
includes
internal
thought
The role of driver state
 Some studies/definitions (but not all) include driver state
as inattention
 i.e. Fatigue, emotional distress/elation
 Question over criteria for inclusion – what about other driver
states such as alcohol and drugs? On what basis are some
driver states included but other driver states not?
 In Regan et al model, treated as:
 Factors that give rise to different forms of inattention or
 Factors that influence the effects of different forms of
inattention
 Specific state related factors (i.e. microsleeps, eyes closed) are
included under restricted inattention
Key Points
 Different opinions about what distraction and
inattention are and how they are defined
 We propose (Regan, Hallett and Gordon)
 Inattention has many forms – distraction is one of them,
need to discuss what the other forms are
 Our framework is part of the discussion
 Need to separate out activity from driver state
 Acknowledge current tools may not allow us to measure
some of the differences in the framework
References
Ascone, D., Lindsey, T., & Varghese, C. (2009). An examination of driver distraction as recorded in NHTSA databases. Traffic Safety
Facts Research Note DoT HS 811-216. National Highway Traffic Safety Authority.
Craft, R,H., & Preslopsky, B. (2009). Driver distraction and inattention in the USA large truck and national motor vehicle crash
causation studies. Paper presented at the First International Conference on Driver Distraction and Inattention (28-29
September).
Dingus, T., et al. (2006). The 100-car naturalistic driving study, Phase II – Results of the 100-car field experiment. Report DoT HS 811593. National Highway Traffic Safety Authority.
Hedlund, J., Simpson, H., & Mayhew, D. (2005). International conference on distracting driving: Summary of proceedings and
recommendations (2-5 October).
Hoel, J., Jaffard, M., & Van Elslande, P. (2010). Attentional competition between tasks and its implications. Paper presented at the
European Conference on Human Centred Design for Intelligent Transport Systems (29-30 April).
Klauer, S., et al. (2006). The impact of driver inattention on near-crash/crash risk: An analysis using the 100-car naturalistic driving
study data. Report DoT HS 810-594. National Highway Traffic Safety Authority.
LTCCS Study. (2006). Large truck causation study: Codebook. U.S. Department of Transportation: Federal Motor Vehicle Carrier
Safety Administration.
Lee, J.D., Young, K.L., & Regan, M.A. (2008). Defining driver distraction. In Regan, M.A., Lee. J.D., Young, K.L. (Eds.), Driver
distraction: Theory, effects and mitigation. CRC Press Taylor & Francis Group.
NHTSA. (2010a). Distracted driving 2009. Traffic Safety Facts Research Note DoT HS 811-379. National Highway Traffic Safety
Authority.
NHTSA. (2010b). Overview of results from the international traffic safety data and analysis group survey on distracted driving data
collection and reporting. Traffic Safety Facts Crash Stats. Report No. DOT HS 811-404. National Highway Traffic Safety Authority.
NMVCCS. Study (2008). National motor vehicle crash causation survey: Report to Congress. Report No DoT HS 811-059. National
Highway Traffic Safety Authority.
Stutts, J., et al. (2005). Guidance for implementation of the AASHTO strategic highway safety plan: Volume 14 – a guide for reducing
crashes involving drowsy and distracted drivers. NCHRP Report No 500, Volume 14. Transportation Research Board.
Treat, J.R. (1980). A study of precrash factors involved in traffic accidents. The HSRI Review, 10(1).
Victor, T.W., Engstrom, J., & Harbluk, J.L. (2008). Distraction assessment methods based on visual behaviour and event detection. In
Regan, M.A., Lee, J.D., Young, K.L. (Eds.), Driver distraction: Theory, effects and mitigation. CRC Press Taylor & Francis Group.

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