Judgments of vehicle approach, in a road crossing situation, amongst primary school children.

Lead Research Organisation: Royal Holloway, University of London
Department Name: Psychology

Abstract

Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description The World Health Organization cites road traffic accidents as one of the world's leading health concerns. This research has investigated the relationship between fundamental aspects of human visual processing across the lifespan and the scenarios in which road accidents are most likely to occur. This research has been at the heart of a national campaign to lower urban speed limits, particularly where child pedestrians are present. This work is amongst the first to document that the perceptual acuity for judging vehicle approach, in road users, is below what would be optimal given the current range of traffic speeds in everyday environments. This research has demonstrated that children under the age of 11 years are vulnerable to making errors. These patterns align well with statistics on UK road accidents. The findings concerning children provide a clear rationale based upon human perceptual abilities for wider use of 20mph zones outside of high risk areas such as schools.
Exploitation Route Parliamentary debate: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201011/cmhansrd/cm110316/halltext/110316h0002.htm 16 Mar 2011 : Column 131WH School Crossing Patrols (Dorset) 4.49 pm Annette Brooke (Mid Dorset and North Poole) (LD): It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Weir. I am very pleased to have secured this debate, because parents across Dorset are deeply concerned about the county council's proposals. It is true to say that my hon. Friend the Member for South Dorset (Richard Drax) and I will be speaking today on behalf of thousands of parents. I understand that 2011-2020 is the United Nations decade of action for road safety, and that in Great Britain pedestrian injury is the leading cause of accidental death among children. Each year, 5,000 children under 16 are seriously injured or die on Britain's roads. The incident rate for children peaks between 8 am and 9 am, when they are travelling to school, and again at 3 pm when they are on their way home. Incidents on school journeys account for 14.6% of all five and six-year-old casualties, 21% of all eight to 11-year-old casualties and 23.9% of all 12 to 15-year-old casualties. Although the United Kingdom has the second lowest road death rate in the EU, its child pedestrian death rate is worse than in 10 other EU countries, and eight times higher than in Sweden. Research by Royal Holloway, university of London shows that children are unable to accurately judge the speed of vehicles travelling at more than 20 miles per hour. The study found that children aged six to 11 suffered from speed illusion, which means that they cannot make a reliable guess at a car's speed if it is going at more than 20 miles per hour, unlike adults, who accurately judge speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. Since 2003, death and injury rates have fallen every year, but road safety groups fear that that trend could end if school crossing patrols were axed...(continued). Changes to planned scrapping of road crossing patrols in dorset: (BBC News 5/10/2011). ' Peter Finney, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "We have listened to what people had to say, and have agreed to retain all 51 school crossing patrols on sites which meet the national criteria."
Sectors Education,Environment,Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Transport

 
Description This project gave us the time & facilities to explore the equivalent speed processing errors, that we had studied in children, in an elderly driver population. We ran two studies into elderly drivers in collaboration with Transport Research Laboratory. We did not use ANY FUNDS from this project to run those studies, as that was not an original cost that was approved, but we used funds from RoSPA and Royal Holloway to support the study costs. This project kept in place the facilities and methodologies, as well as providing revised versions of our software for testing. A paper resulting from the first study is listed as an outcome.These are the 'highlights' from our older driver paper: • Perceptual thresholds were measured using psychophysical procedures to allow precise measurement of perceptual degradation. • We demonstrate that sensitivity to vehicle approach speed declines by nearly 3 mph for every decade in age. • Older drivers over 70 years old may struggle to differentiate between speeds of 20 mph and 40 mph. • The time available for older drivers to make a manoeuvre such as pulling out of a junction could be reduced by up to 50%
First Year Of Impact 2011
Sector Environment,Transport
Impact Types Societal,Policy & public services

 
Description Enhancing driver awareness of perceptual errors in approach speed judgments for road crossing and decisions at junctions
Amount £89,577 (GBP)
Funding ID ES/J00099X/1 
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2011 
End 10/2012
 
Description Enhancing driver awareness of perceptual errors in approach speed judgments for road crossing and decisions at junctions
Amount £89,577 (GBP)
Funding ID ES/J00099X/1 
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2011 
End 10/2012
 
Description Perceptual judgements by elderly road users when observing vehicle approach
Amount £20,000 (GBP)
Organisation Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2010 
End 03/2011
 
Description Road safety campaign citing the research from this study and it relevance for changing urban limits to 20mph 
Organisation 20's Plenty for Us
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution 20's Plenty for Us is a road safety campaign citing the research from this study and it relevance for changing urban limits to 20mph. There are now over 100 campaigns over the country and use our research as part of the case and >40 local regions that have changed their speed limit. http://www.20splentyforus.org.uk/
Start Year 2010
 
Description Trasport Research Laboratory Project on carriageway lighting 
Organisation Transport Research Laboratory Ltd (TRL)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Consultancy input on perceptual decision making for different lighting scenarios
Collaborator Contribution Statistical analysis of KSI and report for Highways England
Impact Report to Highways England
Start Year 2016
 
Description BBC1 'Bang Goes the Theory' feature on child safety 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Lead feature in BBC1s prime-time Science programme focused on child safety based on our research using our software and demonstrators to run an on-camera experiment within a primary school and on the race track. Viewing figures for the series are often in the range of 3-4million. In also has a very large facebook and twitter presence I worked with the BBC to design an easy to comprehend visual and spoken narrative that highlighted the risks posed to children and the implications for urban traffic speeds. This was the lead feature in BBC1s prime-time Science programme and involved an on-camera experiment within a primary school and on the race track.The programme was first broadcast on 25th March but the work was undertaken from jan 2013 onwards.

I worked with the BBC to design an easy to comprehend visual and spoken narrative that highlighted the risks posed to children and the implications for urban traffic speeds. This was the lead feature in BBC1s prime-time Science programme and involved an
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0190msm
 
Description Radio interview BBC Kent 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Live interview with BBC radio Kent at prime-driver-listener-time (8am) regarding the policy of greater use of 20mph zones across Kent Live interview with BBC radio Kent at prime-driver-listener-time (8am) regarding the policy of greater use of 20mph zones across Kent. Used our findings to re-inforce the merit of the (balanced) policy and offset reaction from opposing groups

Live interview with BBC radio Kent at prime-driver-listener-time (8am) regarding the policy of greater use of 20mph zones across Kent. Used our findings to re-inforce the merit of the (balanced) policy and offset reaction from opposing groups
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013