Fundamentals of the Visual Task of Night Driving
ISBN 978 3 900734 37 4
This report presents the principal fundamental information known about the visual task of driving at night and provides insights as to how these principals may be used to make roadways safer and improve traffic flow at night. The first chapter describes the visual task of driving and establishes the elements in the perceptual process, such as visual attention, detection, recognition, decision making and visually guided responses. It then discusses how night driving differs from daylight operations. It deals with questions of fine and coarse spatial vision, vision near detection, threshold and colour vision in night driving situations.
Chapter two identifies and critically evaluates how the night driver acquires information from the roadway scene and discusses what are the important cues needed for vehicular operation.
The third chapter discusses the required sight distances for carrying out the three major subtasks in driving:
- maintenance of lateral position and of correct heading,
- avoidance of hazards and executing proper manoeuvers,
- route selection and following.
Chapter four discusses visibility models and their potential uses.
The final chapter suggests methods for improving road design for nighttime conditions. Design elements discussed include public and vehicular lighting, the use of retroreflective materials and the use of self-luminous signals.
The report contains 70 pages, 9 figures and 8 tables, and a detailed bibliography.
The following members of TC 4-09 took part in the preparation of this technical report:
- W. Adrian, Canada
- H.R. Blackwell, USA
- R.L. Flodina, USSR
- G. Helmers, Sweden (until 1991)
- M. Keck, USA
- P. Padmos, The Netherlands
- D.A. Schreuder, The Netherlands
- R.N. Schwab, USA (Chair)
- B.W. Tansley, Canada
- H.L. Woltman, USA
- Y. Yoshimura, Japan