September 2018
Volume 18, Issue 10
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   September 2018
The effects of age and following a lead car on scanning for and detection of motorcycle hazards at intersections
Author Affiliations
  • Steven Savage
    Schepens Eye Research Institute, MEEI, Harvard Medical School
  • Lily Zhang
    Schepens Eye Research Institute, MEEI, Harvard Medical School
  • Garrett Swan
    Schepens Eye Research Institute, MEEI, Harvard Medical School
  • Dora Pepo
    New England College of Optometry (NECO)
  • Alex Bowers
    Schepens Eye Research Institute, MEEI, Harvard Medical School
Journal of Vision September 2018, Vol.18, 1042. doi:10.1167/18.10.1042
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      Steven Savage, Lily Zhang, Garrett Swan, Dora Pepo, Alex Bowers; The effects of age and following a lead car on scanning for and detection of motorcycle hazards at intersections. Journal of Vision 2018;18(10):1042. doi: 10.1167/18.10.1042.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Older drivers are more frequently involved in collisions at intersections than middle aged drivers. Police reports suggest that over 50% of such collision events were in some way related to older drivers not scanning their visual surroundings sufficiently well. Within the simulated driving literature there is conflicting evidence concerning older drivers' scanning behavior at intersections. Some studies reported that older and younger drivers made similar numbers of head and eye scans, whereas others have demonstrated that older drivers made fewer scans. Furthermore studies have employed different methods with which to guide their participants through the simulated world, which in turn may have affected participants scanning and therefore their detection performance. The current study investigated the effects of age and guidance type on drivers' scanning for and detection of motorcycle hazards at intersections and examined the relationship between scanning behavior and detection performance. We recruited 19 younger (20-40 years) and 16 older (65+ years) drivers, who completed two drives through 43 intersections (16 with motorcycle hazards) in our driving simulator, once following a lead car and once following GPS instructions. Rates of failing to detect a motorcycle were low (about 10%) and did not differ between the two age groups. We found that younger subjects made larger glances, had faster reaction times and shorter search times, but their detections were more frequently unsafe because they drove more quickly. Preliminary analyses suggest that both older and younger subjects made fewer glances in the lead car than the GPS drive. Smaller glances were related to detection failures in both age groups. However, although older drivers made smaller glances on average than younger drivers, they did not have higher miss rates because they were later in making their detections when the motorcycle was at a smaller eccentricity, within the range of their glances.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2018

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