Is partially automated driving a bad idea?: Observations from an on-road study

Publisher's full text
Victoria A. Banks
Jim O'Donoghue
Neville A. Stanton

The automation of longitudinal and lateral control has enabled drivers to become “hands and feet free” but they are required to remain in an active monitoring state with a requirement to resume manual control if required. This represents the single largest allocation of system function problem with vehicle automation as the literature suggests that humans are notoriously inefficient at completing prolonged monitoring tasks. To further explore whether partially automated driving solutions can appropriately support the driver in completing their new monitoring role, video observations were collected as part of an on-road study using a Tesla Model S being operated in Autopilot mode. A thematic analysis of video data suggests that drivers are not being properly supported in adhering to their new monitoring responsibilities and instead demonstrate behaviour indicative of complacency and over-trust. These attributes may encourage drivers to take more risks whilst out on the road. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

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