Debiasing overoptimistic beliefs about braking capacity

Publisher's full text
Ola Svenson
C.K Mertz

We investigated, using questionnaires, different strategies for removing drivers’ overoptimism (Svenson et al., 2012a) about how fast their speed could be decreased when they were speeding compared with braking at the speed limit speed. Three different learning groups and a control group made collision speed judgments. The first learning group had the distance a car travels during a driver's reaction time for each problem. The second group had this information and also feedback after each judgment (correct speed). The third group judged collision speed but also braking distance and received correct facts after each problem. The control group had no information at all about reaction time and the distance traveled during that time. The results suggested the following rank order from poor to improved performance: control, group 1, group 3 and group 2 indicating that information about distance driven during a driver's reaction time improved collision speed judgments and that adding stopping distance information did not add to this improvement.

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