Detection or Appraisal – Do Their Eye Movements Reveal What Causes Novices’ Poor Performance in a Dynamic Hazard Perception Test?

Open Access
Conference Proceedings
Authors: Sarah MaloneRoland Brünken

Abstract: According to Grayson et al. , risk behavior in driving consists of hazard detection, threat appraisal, action selection and implementation. Hazard perception tests often include the task to react quickly to hazards within traffic scenarios. Thus, two components of risk behavior are included in one measure and therefore confounded: hazard detection and threat appraisal. Tracking the eye movements, researchers found evidence for novices having deficits regarding hazard detection . In contrast, Hystegge et al. revealed, that novice drivers were as fast as expert drivers in looking at still hazards but needed more time to evaluate them. The aim of the present eye tracking experiment was to investigate, whether experienced drivers outperform novices with regard to hazard detection or threat appraisal. 22 experienced drivers and 15 learner drivers were presented 32 animated traffic scenarios in a computer based hazard perception test. The depended variables were accuracy and speed of hazard detection (first fixation) and threat appraisal (reaction after detection). Experts outperformed novices clearly in hazard detection: They focused on more hazards and detected them faster than the novices. Moreover, after having detected a hazard, experts react to it more reliable but not faster than the novices.

Keywords: hazard perception, novice drivers, eye tracking

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe100734

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