This article reviewed the association between safe driving and cognitive impairment in elderly individuals, and discussed leaving problems about assessing elderly drivers for fitness to drive and facilitating their mobility. This review placed particular emphasis on the concept of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), which has been used in clinical practice and research over the last two decades. The technical term “MCI” has been based on various criteria, contributing to the difficulty in achieving a consistent explanation of the results from previous studies. Each diagnosis was therefore summarized at first, then previous studies were reviewed to gain an understanding of the impact of cognitive decline on driving safety in drivers with MCI and dementia. Findings of previous studies were also classified into each cognitive disorder due to specific disease (e.g. Alzheimer’s disease; Perkinson’s disease; Lewy body disease; frontotemporal lobar degeneration). Finally, the needs of future studies regarding safe-driving and mobility maintenance for elderly individuals are discussed.
Frequent traffic accidents caused by older adults became a serious social problem in Japan. In order to decrease the number of traffic accidents and victims, older adults are now encouraged to give up their driver’s license, when they become anxious about their driving ability or are diagnosed as dementia. However, it poses problems for their social lives, and even takes away their fun or something to live for. In worst cases, not only quality of life (QOL), but also activities of daily living (ADL) may deteriorate. Technologies such as driver assistance systems or automated driving system compensate declined functions of human beings and secure their mobility. Especially full automation driving system is expected to secure higher safety. However, their fun and something to live for are not brought back by such a full automation system. To ensure both safety and fun, the idea of “person-centered care” would be a good reference. Within person-centered care, the care recipient is considered as an independent and capable individual with his/her own abilities to make informed decisions. Caregivers take the whole person into account including one’s abilities, or resources,wishes, health and well-being as well as social and cultural factors. Advanced driving assistance system in near future is expected to sense the “driver” continuously, to give some suggestions or to support discreetly regarding both his/her condition and moods at the right time, so that the person can drive safely with fun.
In recent years, advanced driving support systems have been introduced in automobiles. When using such systems, drivers have to engage in two parallel tasks: driving a car and operating the systems. However, elderly people have some difficulties in engaging in such a dual-task. Based on the model-based approach using a computational cognitive model, this paper examines the relationship between the difficulties and the decline of two cognitive abilities in elderly people: time perception and working memory capacity. Results of the simulations showed that each decline caused a different type of problem independently. Specifically, the decline in the abilities of time perception led to poorer driving performance, and the lowering of working memory capacity caused failures of the button press operations.
Assumed autonomous cars will be equipped with an advanced sensor technology that would allow them to travel with a short (only a few-centimeter) inter-vehicular distance. Passengers in autonomous cars and pedestrians are expected to feel discomfort and uneasiness with such an unfamiliarly short inter-vehicular distance. The aim of the present study was to examine the level of discomfort experienced by passengers inside autonomous cars and pedestrians outside them. Participants were twenty-four males and females whose age ranged from 20–75 years old. They regularly drove their car at least once a week. Participants were instructed to sit inside a vehicle simulating autonomous driving and to report their level of discomfort under three conditions, i.e., taking right turn at the cross-section with a pedestrian waiting to cross the road, going around a parked car on the street, parking backward right next to a parking car. Participants were asked to rate their discomfort under each condition with four varying distances. Participants were then asked to report their level of discomfort as pedestrians outside the vehicle under the same obstacle-avoidance conditions. The result of the study showed that both passengers and pedestrians felt more discomfort as the distances between the simulated autonomous car and the obstacle became shorter. When simulated autonomous cars avoided the vehicle parked on the street,passengers tended to feel greater discomfort than pedestrians did and that passengers less confident in driving felt greater discomfort than those more confident in driving. Based on the results, we calculated appropriate distances which autonomous cars should take from various obstacles. The study proposed a range of obstacle-avoidance distance in city area, which could be used as one of the design guidelines for autonomous driving. Revising these guidelines would be necessary in the future when autonomous vehicles will become more socially accepted, as people’s perceived discomfort level is expected to change.
This study investigated which factors affect the usability evaluation of an ACC (Adaptive cruise control). In the experiment, the participants drove a Toyota Prius car with an ACC on real highway. 215 different kinds of driving data were sampled at 60 Hz during driving. At each of the six designated stop points set on driving course, the participants stopped the car and evaluated the usability of the ACC by answering Usability Questionnaire for Automation System. The participants’ driving styles were measured with Driving Style Questionnaire. As results of multiple regression analyses,we found how the participants’ driving styles, the driving control of the ACC, and the participants’ intervention in the driving control of the ACC influenced the usability evaluation. The results were discussed in terms of the human-automation interaction and the design principles of an ACC.
Advanced driving assistance system supports human drivers in two ways. First, the system provides information about the surrounding environment and encourages drivers to change their behavior. Second, the system intervenes in driving behavior directly to assure the safety. Such a system makes two different effects on drivers. The first is a cognitive effect, which includes drivers’ subjective evaluations about the system. The second is a behavioral effect, which includes drivers’ behavioral changes after driving with the system. We examined how information presentation and behavioral intervention affect drivers in both cognitive and behavioral aspects. The results show that information presentation makes a significant effect on drivers’ behavioral changes after driving with the system while behavioral intervention makes a significant effect on drivers’ evaluations about the system.
The aim of this study is understanding the interaction occured during driving training. In driving trainings driving operations and utterances occur sequentially in a closely related way. So this study analyses the sequence as the interaction between participants involving driving operations. A videotaped data recorded inside a car when the driving training was going on. In the data there are two participants: the trainee and the supporter. This study focuses on the scene of slope starting training. The concrete questions is as follows: 1. What interaction is done in the driving training. 2.What the interaction achieves in the driving training. The results are below: When a trial of slope starting has failed, the trainee declares that the trial is a failure and describes what the failure is like before the supporter says something related to the trial. This indicates that during the driving training trainee has to certificate the understanding on what has to be understood by a driver. The declaration and description of failure as early as possible is a certification of the understanding.