Center for Injury Research and Prevention

Emergency Braking in Adults Versus Novice Teen Drivers: Response to Simulated Driving Events

TitleEmergency Braking in Adults Versus Novice Teen Drivers: Response to Simulated Driving Events
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsLoeb H, Kandadai V, McDonald CC, Winston FK
JournalTransp Res Rec
Date Published12/2015

Motor vehicle crashes remain the leading cause of death in teens in the United States. Newly licensed drivers are the group most at risk for crashes. Their driving skills are very new, still very often untested, so that their ability to properly react in an emergency situation remains a research question. Since it is impossible to expose human subjects to critical life threatening driving scenarios, researchers have been increasingly using driving simulators to assess driving skills. This paper summarizes the results of a driving scenario in a study comparing the driving performance of novice teen drivers (n=21) 16-17 year olds with 90 days of provisional licensure with that of experienced adult drivers (n=17) 25-50 year olds with at least 5 years of PA licensure, at least 100 miles driven per week and no self-reported collisions in the previous 3 years. As part of a 30 to 35 simulated drive that encompassed the most common scenarios that result in serious crashes, participants were exposed to a sudden car event. As the participant drove on a suburban road, a car surged from a driveway hidden by a fence on the right side of the road. To avoid the crash, participants must hard brake, exhibiting dynamic control over both attentional and motor resources. The results showed strong differences between the experienced adult and novice teen drivers in the brake pressure applied. When placed in the same situation, the novice teens decelerated on average 50% less than the experienced adults (p<0.01).

Alternate JournalTransp Res Rec
PubMed ID26709330