Print ISSN: 1681-6900

Online ISSN: 2412-0758

Keywords : Accident Risk

Assessing the Effect of Eating as a Distraction Factor While Driving on Drivers' Performance

Zinah A. Saihood; Ahmed S. Abdul Jabbar; Rasha H. Al-Rubaee

Engineering and Technology Journal, 2021, Volume 39, Issue 12, Pages 1851-1859
DOI: 10.30684/etj.v39i12.2133

The increase in the number of traffic accidents, deaths, and injuries is a major concern for traffic and safety professionals. Distraction from the road is common, but increases safety concerns. Drivers engage in many behaviors that are a distraction from the task of driving, and these sources may be inside or outside the vehicle. The driver may not have a clear idea of the negative impact of such activities on achieving safe driving. The paper focused on one type of distraction that occurs inside the car, the factor of eating while driving in order to address the question of whether such activities cause anxiety. The effect of eating while driving as an additional task (dual task) compared to driving baseline (single task) on each driver's performance and safety was studied. This research was conducted at the University of Technology-Iraq uses a fixed and medium accuracy driving simulator. To measure driver performance, the driver's ability to maintain a set speed limit was tested. For safety, the driver's ability to avoid accidents was measured. The highway environment scenario was adopted to perform driving experiences for the 42 participants, the length of the road was 15 km, and the driving experience took (30) minutes at a rate of (10-15) minutes for each driving task. The results revealed a decrease in the mean journey speed of all participants during the (dual driving) experiment compared to the results of the mean journey speed (single driving). The speed of females decreased more than males. The youngest age group (19-29) years led at a faster rate than the age groups (30-39), (40-49), and (50-55). No accidents were recorded during the baseline driving task. In the dual driving task, females recorded a higher number of accidents than males. The youth category (19-29) was characterized by recording the largest number of accidents.