Browse Publications Technical Papers 2021-01-0861
2021-04-06

Vehicle Automation Emergency Scenario: Using a Driving Simulator to Assess the Impact of Hand and Foot Placement on Reaction Time 2021-01-0861

As vehicles with SAE level 2 of autonomy become more widely deployed, they still rely on the human driver to monitor the driving task and take control during emergencies. It is therefore necessary to examine the Human Factors affecting a driver’s ability to recognize and execute a steering or pedal action in response to a dangerous situation when the autonomous system abruptly requests human intervention. This research used a driving simulator to introduce the concept of level 2 autonomy to a cohort of 60 drivers (male: 48%, female: 52%) of different age groups (teens 16 to 19: 32%, adults: 35 to 54: 37%, seniors 65+: 32%). Participants were surveyed for their perspectives on self-driving vehicles. They were then assessed on a driving simulator that mimicked SAE level 2 of autonomy. Participants’ interaction with the HMI was studied. A real-life scenario was programmed so that a request to intervene was issued when automation reached its boundaries while navigating a two-way curve road (TTC = 2.2 seconds). We found that at the time of the event, only 12% of participants kept their hands on the steering wheel. Only 64% of participants had their foot close to pedals. All participants who reacted within 0.65 seconds were able to avoid the crash. All participants who reacted after 0.9 seconds crashed. As a last construct, we looked at age and gender to understand how different participants behaved while vehicle automation was engaged.

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