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An investigation of the potential causes of motorcycle accidents at road junctions

Alhawli, Yousef 2017. An investigation of the potential causes of motorcycle accidents at road junctions. MPhil Thesis, Cardiff University.
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Motorcycle visibility is a major road traffic accident concern, and many road traffic collisions (RTCs) involving motorcycles are caused by a “right of way” violation. The aim of this thesis is to investigate drivers’ ability to detect and identify motorcycles when the visual scene at T-junctions is manipulated and the driver is experiencing in-car distractors. Experiments 1-3 investigated the effects of distracting stimuli on participants’ ability to detect motorcycles (and cars) in static visual scenes depicting T-junctions. The distractions involved speaking, listening or being asked to engage in spatial imagery. Experiments 4 and 5 used the same type of images, but increased the amount of traffic in the static visual scenes of T-junctions, and changed the task demands from detection (of any vehicle) to identification (car or motorcycle). Finally, Experiment 6 examined the role of experience in identifying vehicles by examining the performance of novice and experienced drivers in the types of task developed in Experiments 1-5. The accuracy and speed with which motorcycles were detected was affected by the distance at which they were depicted, this effect was exacerbated when drivers are being distracted by interactive spatial and verbal tasks (Experiments 1-3), and by the presence on non-target cars at the junction (Experiments 4 and 5). These manipulations had less impact when cars were the targets. Experiment 6 showed that novice drivers were especially inaccurate in detecting motorcyles in the distance These results may help to improve driver awareness of the conditions under which they are most likely to be prone to cause accidents involving motorcycles. They highlight some of the determinants of whether motorcycles will be identified at T-junctions, which could inform policy.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 October 2017
Date of Acceptance: 16 October 2017
Last Modified: 16 Oct 2017 16:04

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