2017 Volume 10 Issue 5 Pages 460-467
Automation systems that regard humans as the final authority have been found to be efficient and are therefore widely accepted. However, it has been argued that automation needs to be allowed to act autonomously in some time-critical situations, such as road traffic accidents. Possible interactions might occur between humans, especially those not well trained as car drivers, and authorised autonomous systems. A study using a driving simulator was designed to examine human-machine interactions when driving with two types of assistance systems: sharing of steering control that provides haptic control guidance through the steering wheel to resist hazardous lane changes, and an automatic cooperative system that acts autonomously to avoid hazardous lane changes. Whilst the drivers were in charge of steering in all circumstances when sharing the steering control, they were unable to steer their vehicles during the autonomous control. Results showed that increasing automation authority does not necessarily lead to improved safety. Other factors like human-machine cooperation need to be considered when the assistance system experiences functional limitations. Although lane change crashes were significantly reduced when the drivers were supported by the autonomous system, drivers reacted earlier and more convenient when supported by the haptic system.