Effectiveness of Workload-Based Drowsy Driving Countermeasures
This study evaluated the effectiveness of alternative workload-based interventions intended to restore driver alertness following drowsy episodes. Unlike traditional drowsy driving studies, this experiment did not target sleep-deprived individuals, but rather studied normally rested drivers under the assumption that low-workload environments could trigger drowsy driving episodes. The study served as a proof of concept for varying the nature and onset of countermeasure interventions intended to disrupt the drowsiness cycle. Interventions to combat drowsiness attempted to target driver workload, either physical or cognitive, and included two primary treatment conditions: 1) physical workload to increase driver steering demands and 2) trivia-based interactive games to mentally challenge drivers. A benchmark comparison condition using music was also investigated to contrast the relative influence of workload-based interventions with passive listening to musical arrangements.