The effects of driving experience and mild traumatic brain injury on drivers' hazard perception

Bonnie Griffiths (2011). The effects of driving experience and mild traumatic brain injury on drivers' hazard perception Honours Thesis, School of Psychology, The University of Queensland.

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Author Bonnie Griffiths
Thesis Title The effects of driving experience and mild traumatic brain injury on drivers' hazard perception
School, Centre or Institute School of Psychology
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2011-10-12
Thesis type Honours Thesis
Supervisor Associate Professor Mark Horswill
Total pages 99
Language eng
Subjects 1701 Psychology
Abstract/Summary The cognitive impairments associated with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) have implications for safe driving (Lundqvist, 2001; Lundqvist, et al., 1997). Recent research has found that mTBI is associated with impaired hazard perception during the acute phase of the injury (Preece, Horswill, & Geffen, 2010). Hazard perception is a crash-related, cognitive component of driving skill, and is defined as the ability to anticipate dangerous situations on the road (McKenna & Horswill, 2004). As the cognitive demand of hazard perception appears likely to increase with driving experience, the present study investigated whether older-experienced drivers with mTBI would show a disproportionately larger hazard perception impairment in comparison to younger-novice drivers. A total of 87 participants aged between 18 and 59 years were recruited from the emergency department of a major metropolitan hospital within 24 hours of injury, and from the University of Queensland. Contrary to expectations, no significant interaction was found between injury type and driving experience on hazard perception scores, F(1,83) = 0.10, p =.76, η2 = < .001. However, older-experienced drivers perceived hazards significantly more quickly than younger-novice drivers, F(1,83) = 16.34, p < .001, η2 = .16. Additionally, participants with mTBI perceived hazards significantly more slowly than mixed-controls on the hazard perception test, F(1,83) = 5.91, p = .02, η2=.06. Two potential confounds, simple spatial reaction time, and blood alcohol concentration, may have contributed to the observed effect of injury. It is argued that drivers should be advised of the potential crash risks associated with impaired hazard perception, and efforts made to quantify that risk. Opportunities for hazard perception testing and training are suggested. A number of areas of further research are explored, including the need for prospective follow-up studies in order to establish the recovery trajectory of hazard perception impairment following mTBI.
Keyword Mild traumatic brain injury
Drivers' hazard perception

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Created: Thu, 14 Jun 2012, 11:11:08 EST by Mrs Ann Lee on behalf of School of Psychology