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Field Operational Tests and Naturalistic Driving Studies INVESTIGATING THE IMPACT OF A LANE DEPARTURE WARNING SYSTEM IN REAL DRIVING CONDITIONS -A SUBJECTIVE FIELD OPERATIONAL TEST

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This paper presents the Italian Field Operation Test (FOT) to be performed within the European project euroFOT aimed at assessing a wide variety of Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) across Europe. The Italian FOT in euroFOT is aimed at investigating the Lane Departure Warning system (LDW) equipped on Lancia Delta vehicles, deploying a sample of up to 300 vehicles and using a wide and differentiated set of self-reported questionnaires. Based on subjective responses, objective measures will be constructed using psychometric methods and models. Results will assess subjective user-related aspects and will be referred to LDW impact on driving safety, user acceptance of the system, usefulness and driving behaviour. Because of the psychometric methodology adopted, results are expected to accurately depict the actual impact of this function.
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Field Operational Tests and Naturalistic Driving Studies
313
INVESTIGATING THE IMPACT OF A LANE
DEPARTURE WARNING SYSTEM IN REAL DRIVING
CONDITIONS - A SUBJECTIVE FIELD OPERATIONAL
TEST
Gianfranco Burzio1, Leandro Guidotti2, Guido Perboli3, Michele Settanni4,
Roberto Tadei3, Francesco Tesauri2
1Centro Ricerche FIAT, Strada Torino, 50, 10043 Orbassano (TO), Italy,
gianfranco.burzio@crf.it
2Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Engineering Sciences and Methods
Department, via Amendola 2, 42122 Reggio Emilia, Italy,
leandro.guidotti@unimore.it; francesco.tesauri@unimore.it
3Politecnico di Torino, Department of Control and Computer Engineering, Corso
Duca degli Abruzzi 24, 10129 Torino Italy, guido.perboli@polito.it;
roberto.tadei@polito.it
4Università di Torino, Department of Psychology, via Verdi 10, 10124 Torino,
Italy, michele.settanni@unito.it
ABSTRACT: This paper presents the Italian Field Operation Test (FOT) to be
performed within the European project euroFOT aimed at assessing a wide
variety of Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) across Europe. The Italian FOT
in euroFOT is aimed at investigating the Lane Departure Warning system
(LDW) equipped on Lancia Delta vehicles, deploying a sample of up to 300
vehicles and using a wide and differentiated set of self-reported
questionnaires. Based on subjective responses, objective measures will be
constructed using psychometric methods and models. Results will assess
subjective user-related aspects and will be referred to LDW impact on driving
safety, user acceptance of the system, usefulness and driving behaviour.
Because of the psychometric methodology adopted, results are expected to
accurately depict the actual impact of this function.
1. INTRODUCTION
1.1 Field Operational Test
The Intelligent Car Initiative (ICI) has identified road safety, energy, efficiency
and traffic congestion as the main challenges currently facing European
transportation. Despite their severity, these issues may be improved with the
use of new in-vehicle technologies recently made available in the market.
Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) – including both safety and telematic
applications - have been the subject of significant research and development in
Europe in recent years and several models of passenger cars are now
equipped with these systems as optional features (e.g. ACC, FCW, LDW, BLIS,
etc.). However, implementing new technologies implies risks to manufacturers.
Factors such as impact of these systems on traffic safety, markets’ and users’
acceptance are difficult to assess alone from internal testing.
Moving from this preamble, European Commission launched - within the
Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) for research and technological
development – a large programme of Field Operational Tests (FOT) where
Human Centred Design for Intelligent Transport Systems
314
benefits of ITSs towards traffic safety and users’ acceptance will be largely
tested. In this context, euroFOT research project started (http://www.eurofot-
ip.eu) with the main aim to demonstrate the effectiveness and encouraging the
deployment of intelligent vehicle systems on European roads.
1.2 euroFOT project
During the course of 2010, over 1000 vehicles will be tested from 9 European
OEM brands. Several test centres will be set-up across France, Germany, Italy
and Sweden [1]. The goal of euroFOT project is to identify and coordinate an in-
the-field testing of ITSs with the potential for improving the quality and safety of
European road traffic. euroFOT consortium has brought together 28 different
organizations across Europe (e.g. car manufacturers, suppliers, universities,
research institutes and others stakeholders) [1].
In details, euroFOT project will mainly address the following research issues: (i)
performance and capability of the systems; (ii) driver’s interaction with and
reaction to the systems; (iii) impacts of ITSs on safety, efficiency and
environment. In order to reach its objectives, the project is applying the
methodology that was developed in 2008 in the European FESTA project [2].
1.3 Functions to be tested in euroFOT project
Different field testing are expected in this project, focused on 8 distinct
functions. In particular: driver assistance in forward/rear longitudinal control
functions (i.e. Adaptive Cruise Control, Forward Collision Warning, Speed
Regulation System), in lateral control (i.e. Blind Spot Information System, Lane
Departure Warning and Impairment Warning), and finally other advanced
applications such as Curve Speed Warning, Fuel Efficiency Advisor and Safe
Human-Machine Interface [1].
The project will follow three major steps. In the first, the fleets are being
prepared for the trials specifying the functions, defining hypotheses for each of
the functions, setting up data management procedures, and recruiting the
drivers’ samples. Secondly, involving the installation of data loggers and
functionalities into the vehicles. Finally, analyzing data collected from the
vehicle monitoring devices and from the driver himself (the so-called objective
and subjective data).
2. TESTING THE LANE DEPARTURE WARNING
This paper is focused to describe and highlight the preliminary results of the
Italian test site in the framework of the euroFOT project. The test will investigate
the LDW function available on the Lancia Delta (see Figure 1), namely the
Driving Advisor. In the euroFOT project, other test sites (i.e. German 1 and
Sweden test sites) will also test LDW function using a different experimental
method [1].
Field Operational Tests and Naturalistic Driving Studies
315
Fig.1. Lancia Delta
2.1 Lancia Lane Departure Warning system
This ADAS (i.e. Advance Driver Assistance System) solution available on the
Lancia Delta, with the market name of Driving Advisor, provides a feedback to
the driver through a torque applied on the steering wheel as soon as the driver
unintentionally is going close or overcome a lane border, when the proper
indicator is not activated (see Figure 2). This system uses a small camera
mounted on the rearing mirror to acquire images of the road in front of the
vehicle, then measuring the vehicle position relatively to the lane borders.
Fig. 2. Lancia Lane Departure Warning system
2.2 Design of Experiment and questionnaires
Italian FOT in the euroFOT project has the objective to select up to 250
customers/drivers of the LDW system and follow them in the first period of use,
i.e. 9 months [1]. During such period, drivers will provide their feedback
answering specific questionnaires or filling forms related to specific events that
happened during the vehicle usage and their subjective evaluation about the
LDW system.
Human Centred Design for Intelligent Transport Systems
316
The use of subjective data does not guarantee the same level of reliability
provided by objective data gathered from data loggers. Nonetheless, given the
aims of this project, the use of self-reported questionnaires is indicated because
it permits to collect data about phenomena which are not directly observable,
such as LDW user acceptance, driver reactions, subjective mental workload,
users’ trust in the system and so on.
The Design of Experiment (DoE) has been defined in order to improve as much
as possible the subsequent data analysis and to detect if there are significant
correlations between variables (see Figure 5). Therefore questionnaires have
been planned to be filled in by two different groups of users, called LDW Group
and Control Group, respectively. The first one (i.e. LDW Group) involves users
driving their own car (i.e. Lancia Delta) equipped with the LDW system. In a first
period of driving they should not use the LDW system ensuring a baseline
period. In subsequent treatment period the same group of drivers will be able to
use the LDW system and drive normally. This DoE will allow a within subject
analysis in the LDW Group of users in order to detect differences in driving
attitudes and behaviour, use of the system and the user acceptance of it over
the test period. The Control Group involves users driving their own car (i.e.
Lancia Delta) not equipped with the LDW system. Questionnaires will be also
filled in by these users but items related to LDW system use will be not
administered to them. Control Group questionnaires are focused in driving
attitudes and behaviours and in LDW system expectations. The Control Group
and this DoE will allow a between subject analysis with the LDW Group users.
Fig. 3. FOT Design of Experiment
About experimental procedures, five questionnaires are planned (see Figure 4).
They are directed to the vehicle main user. The first one is an introductory
questionnaire in which the major social and demographic characteristics of
drivers, including their driving habits, attitudes and behaviours will be collected.
Some standardized tools could be used to register these drivers’
characteristics. The Driving Behaviour Questionnaire (DBQ) will be used to
register the frequency of driving errors, violations and lapses judged by the
drivers themselves. In DBQ questionnaire the drivers have to base their
judgments on what they remember of their own driving over the past year [3].
The questionnaire will be filled in by drivers as soon as they accept to
participate to the project, well before, if possible, to get the vehicle.
A specific section of the first introduction questionnaire could register the risk
perception of the drivers facing them with a explained contest and asking how
often they engage in a behaviour like that or how likely they are getting in an
accident while doing that. That section is called Sensation Seeking
questionnaire [4]. Another standardized tool that will be used in the second
Field Operational Tests and Naturalistic Driving Studies
317
questionnaire is the Driving Style Questionnaire (DSQ) that examines how
drivers usually behave in specific situations [5].
Other questionnaires will be filled in by drivers every 2 months. These
questionnaires will detect users' perception about safety, trust, effectiveness,
usefulness and value of the Driving Advisor, in strict accordance with the
FESTA project research hypotheses referred to these functions, and the
corresponding performance indicators, i.e. the quantifiable way to detect how
these hypotheses can be assessed [2].
In the periodical questionnaires the drivers will be asked to fill in a specific post
test questionnaire section. These questionnaires aim to detect the viewpoint of
the user about some aspects of the LDW function like the perceived usability,
the compatibility with the driving task, the perceived system consequences, the
ease of use, the learnability and the perceived efficiency. In these periodical
questionnaires, users could also be asked to evaluate themselves about their
driving performance in the last period [6]. A specific section in the periodical
questionnaires is dedicated to the drivers’ acceptance using Van Der Laan
scale to register the usability of the system [7]. The risk perception of the drivers
is also registered.
A weekly vehicle normal use register will be also provided in order to detect and
manage data about drivers’ car use during the FOT execution. Drivers will be
asked to fill in a form and register some data as how many kilometres they did
in the last week and what was the average speed in that period. A board diary
is finally planned to detect driver particular perception about LDW in a specific
scenario, type of road, driver status and also the description of the event and
the state of the system.
Participants’ responses to questionnaires will be treated using Item Response
Theory (IRT) models, which permit to generate measures from subjective
responses [8].
This assessment has been defined in strict accordance with the FESTA project
research hypotheses referred to these ITSs functions and the corresponding
performance indicators, i.e. the quantifiable way to detect how these
hypotheses can be assessed [2].
Human Centred Design for Intelligent Transport Systems
318
Fig. 4. Questionnaires planning and timing at a glance
2.3 Testing of research hypotheses
The euroFOT project defined and prioritized research hypotheses for each
function that will be tested. These hypotheses have been derived from FESTA
project [2] and from the consultations between intelligent transport system
experts performed in the framework of euroFOT activities [1]. These
hypotheses are derived also considering system specifications and use cases.
The top research hypotheses defined about LDW function are briefly reported in
the following. Does the LDW decrease and mitigate incidents, near-crashes,
and accidents? Does LDW influences lateral driving performance? Does it
increase the use of turn indicators in lane changing situations? Does LDW
usage increase more and more over time? Does LDW increase night driving?
Does LDW lead to an appropriate driver reaction? Is LDW well accepted by the
driver? Does LDW acceptance/adoption increase with LDW usage?
According to FESTA project, even performance indicators have been defined in
the methodological framework of euroFOT to test the hypotheses (see Figure
5).
In the test of Lancia LDW the repeated rounds of questionnaires will highlight
changes in users’ perceptions over time and, according to the Design of
Experiment defined, allow analysts to test the hypotheses.
Field Operational Tests and Naturalistic Driving Studies
319
Fig. 5. The FOT chain defined in FESTA project [2]
2.4 Test planning and experimental procedures
All questionnaires are paper-based, but on line questionnaires has been set up
as an option. Users will be allowed to fill in web-based questionnaires
developed through Limesurvey software (http://www.limesurvey.org).
The first draft of the questionnaires has been developed during 2009 and now is
going to be updated and fixed. A help desk contact (i.e. driver liaison centre),
which provides support and all information about the project, has been set up.
In particular, a specific phone number and an email address are available for
drivers that want information about questionnaires and how to fill in them.
On line tool (i.e. Limesurvey) will be also used to translate in digital form the
manually filled paper-based questionnaires. All data collected through
questionnaires will be inserted into a data server and properly analyzed using
the identified statistical algorithms. According to euroFOT consortium, the
preliminary results concerning user acceptance and user-related aspects, the
impact analysis and the Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA) will be defined at the
beginning of 2010. The guidelines and the Data Analysis Plan will be fixed
during 2010, based on the piloting outcomes (see Table 1 and Figure 6).
Human Centred Design for Intelligent Transport Systems
320
Table 1 – Piloting overview
Piloting tests start Since October 2009.
Number of vehicles in Piloting tests 10 vehicles with LDW recruited by Fiat.
10 vehicles as piloting Control Group
without LDW recruited by Fiat.
Duration of Piloting test 3 months.
Submission of introduction questionnaire
and some periodical questionnaires to test
core items.
Piloting drivers recruited from New owners of Lancia Delta equipped with
Driving Advisor optional feature (LDW
system).
Fig. 6. - Piloting experimental design and timing of Piloting
questionnaires
After piloting review of questionnaires and test of every operational procedure,
the FOT will start with the recruiting ramping up phase (see Table 2 and Figure
7). Questionnaires will be administered as defined above. As already described,
FOT experimental design includes a within subjects analysis with a baseline
and a LDW treatment period and it also includes a Control Group (i.e. drivers of
Lancia Delta car without LDW system) to ensure a between subjects analysis.
Field Operational Tests and Naturalistic Driving Studies
321
Table 2 – FOT overview
Type of vehicle Cars.
Location National. All Italy.
Road types All types of roads.
Number of vehicles Up to 300 (including Control Group).
Drivers recruited by Lancia direct contact.
Drivers recruited from New owners of Lancia Delta equipped with
Driving Advisor optional feature (LDW
system).
Incentive Fuel bonus.
Pre selection criteria Contact letter and screening questionnaire.
FOT start From February 2010.
Control Group New owner of Lancia Delta without LDW
system.
Number of Control Group vehicles About 150.
Fig. 7. - FOT experimental design and timing of FOT questionnaires
3. CONCLUSION
This FOT will permit an accurate investigation and understanding of the impact
of LDW system in respect to several subjective aspects such as perceived
safety, usefulness, acceptance, driving behaviours and subjective mental
workload. This statistically significant assessment would offer to OEM,
stakeholders and researchers the possibility to consider the results of this
analysis not only limited to a restricted number of subjects but extendable to the
drivers’ universe as a whole.
The complete results will be available at the end of the project, planned in 2011
[1].
4 REFERENCES
[1] euroFOT consortium, 'Description of Work v1.5', 2008.
[2] FESTA consortium, 'FESTA Handbook deliverable D6.4', 2008.
[3] Reason, J.T., Manstead, A.S.R., Stradling, S.G., Baxter, J.S. and
Campbell, K. 'Errors and violations on the road: a real distinction?' in
'Ergonomics vol. 33', 1990, pp. 1315-1322.
[4] Arnett, J., 'Sensation seeking: A new conceptualization and a new scale' in
Human Centred Design for Intelligent Transport Systems
322
'Personality and Individual Differences', 16, 1994, pp. 289-296.
[5] West, R., Elander, J., & French, D., 'Decision making, personality and
driving style as correlates of individual accident risk' in 'TRL Contractor
Report 309', Transport Research Laboratory, Crowthorne, United
Kingdom, 1992.
[6] COMUNICAR consortium, 'COMUNICAR deliverable D6.4', 2002.
[7] Van der Laan, J.D., Heino, A. and De Waard, D., 'A simple procedure for
the assessment of acceptance of advanced transport telematics' in
'Transportation Research Part C Vol. 5', pp.1-10, 1997.
[8] Bond, T. G., Fox, C. M., 'Applying the Rasch Model. Fundamental
Measurement in the Human Sciences. 2nd Edition', Trevor, University of
Toledo, 2007
... For a warning system like LDW, the false alarm rate should be very low, as high rates irritate drivers and lead to system rejection. The exact amount of false alarms acceptable by drivers is still a subject for research [14,15], and some available systems report few false alarms per hour [16] . At 15 frames per second , 1 false alarm per hour means one error in 54,000 frames. ...
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Decision making, personality and driving style as correlates of individual accident risk' in 'TRL Contractor Report 309
  • R West
  • J Elander
  • D French
West, R., Elander, J., & French, D., 'Decision making, personality and driving style as correlates of individual accident risk' in 'TRL Contractor Report 309', Transport Research Laboratory, Crowthorne, United Kingdom, 1992.