Lundkvist, A. and Nykänen, A., "Response Times for Visual, Auditory and Vibrotactile Directional Cues in Driver Assistance Systems," SAE Int. J. Trans. Safety 4(1):8-14, 2016, doi:10.4271/2015-01-9153.
The number of advanced driver assistance systems is constantly increasing. Many of the systems require visual attention, and a way to reduce risks associated with inattention could be to use multisensory signals. A driver's main attention is in front of the car, but inattention to surrounding areas beside and behind the car can be a risk. Therefore, there is a need for driver assistance systems capable of directing attention to the sides. In a simulator study, combined visual, auditory and vibrotactile signals for directional attention capture were designed for use in driver assistance systems, such as blind spot information, parking assistance, collision warnings, navigation, lane departure warning etc. An experiment was conducted in order to measure the effects of the use of different sensory modalities on directional attention (left/right) in driver assistance systems. Attention was assessed in a driving simulator using Lane Change Task together with a secondary task, designed to measure choice response times and error rates to directional (left/right) information for multisensory signals. Different combinations of visual, auditory and vibrotactile signals were tested and compared. Visual signals alone (when captured by the driver) or in combination with other modalities provided shortest response times (570 ms on average). Auditory and vibrotactile signals captured attention equally well in terms of response time (650 ms and 740 ms on average). No significant differences in localization error rates were observed.