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An assessment of the effect of cellular telephone use while driving on driving performance

Ibraheem Saleh Al-Tarawneh, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

The objective of this research was to assess the effect of cellular telephone use while driving on driving performance. A two-fold assessment was carried out. First, the effect of the secondary task of using a cellular phone on choice response time and accuracy in simulated driving were tested and compared to that of simulated driving without using the cellular phone. Second, the effect of the secondary task of using a cellular phone on tracking accuracy in a simple tracking task was tested and compared to that of simple tracking without using a cellular phone. Consequently the study involved two separate experiments: a simulated driving experiment and a simple tracking experiment. ^ Results from the research showed that the inclusion of the secondary task increased the participants choice response time in simulated driving and decreased tracking accuracy in simple tracking. The complex conversation handheld phone and the looking up the calendar and taking notes hands-free phone conditions resulted in significant increases in choice response time as compared to the no-phone secondary task condition. The dialing, complex conversation handheld phone, and the looking up the calendar and taking notes hands-free phone secondary task conditions resulted in significant drops in tracking accuracy as compared to the no-phone condition. No differences in choice response time and tracking accuracy means were found between the handheld and hands-free phones. However, the conversation level of complexity was found to have a significant effect on choice response time and tracking accuracy. Cellular phone secondary tasks that required visual scanning resulted in the highest increases in choice response time and the highest drops in tracking accuracy. High correlation was found between the participants' choice response time in simulated driving and tracking accuracy in simple tracking, which implies that a simple tracking task can be used as a proxy for simulated driving. It is recommended that further research be undertaken to validate the results with a high-fidelity driving simulator. ^

Subject Area

Engineering, Industrial

Recommended Citation

Al-Tarawneh, Ibraheem Saleh, "An assessment of the effect of cellular telephone use while driving on driving performance" (2002). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3055258.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3055258

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