SWOV Catalogus


Afleiding in het verkeer : een overzicht van de literatuur.
C 50675 [electronic version only]
Stelling, A. & Hagenzieker, M.P.
Leidschendam, Stichting Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek Verkeersveiligheid SWOV, 2012, 87 p., 191 ref.; R-2012-4

Samenvatting Distraction in traffic; A literature review. Increasingly, distraction is acknowledged as an important risk factor in traffic. The more and more widespread distribution of electronic devices in traffic (e.g. mobile phones, navigation systems) will cause the problem of distraction to grow. This report presents a literature review of the facts that are already known about the problem of distraction among drivers (of passenger cars, trucks and buses), cyclists and pedestrians in relation with road safety. The knowledge gaps concerning this issue will also be discussed. Many scientific definitions of distraction can be found in the literature, but there is no clear, widely used definition. Distraction can be seen as misallocated attention or attention for the ‘wrong thing’. A definition that is often used characterizes distraction as ‘a diversion of attention away from activities critical for safe driving toward a competing activity'. Generally, a more operational definition of distraction is used in practice. For example: driver distraction is defined as occurring when a road user is engaged in an extra task that is not necessary to perform the primary driving task. A consistent, widely accepted definition is desirable to make interpretation and comparison of the research findings easier, but it has appeared difficult to agree on such a definition. Road users can be distracted by different sources, for example by operating devices, but also by listening to music, looking at a bill board, or reaching for an object (e.g. food, drink). Most sources of distraction involve more than one type of distraction. Reaching for a certain object, for instance, may involve visual and physical distraction while mobile phone conversation can cause cognitive and auditory distraction. Based on various studies into the behavioural effects of distraction, it can be established that distraction affects some of the essential aspects of road users’ performance.
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