SWOV Catalogus


Combined effects of alcohol and distraction on driving performance.
I E139239 /83 / ITRD E139239
Rakauskas, M.E. Ward, N.J. Boer, E.R. Bernat, E.M. Cadwallader, M. & Patrick, C.J.
Accident Analysis & Prevention. 2008 /09. 40(5) Pp1742-1749 (44 Refs.)

Samenvatting Although alcohol and distraction are often cited as significant risk factors for traffic crashes, most research has considered them in isolation. It is therefore necessary to consider the interactions between alcohol and distraction impairment sources, especially when examining the relationship between behavior and crash risk. In a driving simulator, the primary goal was to maintain a safe headway to a lead vehicle and the secondary goal was to maintain stable lane position. All participants engaged in distractions that represented different levels of resource competition and half of the participants consumed alcohol (target BAC 0.08 g/dl). Specific comparisons were made between sober driving while distracted and driving intoxicated without distraction. Distraction tasks produced more changes in driving behavior than did alcohol for both longitudinal (primary) and lateral (secondary) driving goals. Alcohol impairment was evident only in relation to lateral driving performance, however there was an amplification of impairment when alcohol and distraction conditions were combined. Distraction resulted in a general level of impairment across all driving goals, whereas participants with alcohol appeared to shed secondary driving goals to protect primary driving goals. Drivers' strategies to cope with alcohol (and distraction) may not be sufficient to offset the increased crash risk. (A) Reprinted with permission from Elsevier.
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