Volume List  / Volume 6 (3)



DOI: 10.7708/ijtte.2016.6(3).08

6 / 3 / 325-338 Pages


Sanaz Motamedi - Department of Mechanical, Industrial and System Engineering, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 0288, USA -

Jyh-Hone Wang - Department of Mechanical, Industrial and System Engineering, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 0288, USA -


In an increasingly mobile era, the wide availability of technology for texting and the prevalence of hands-free form have introduced a new safety concern for drivers. To assess this concern, a questionnaire was first deployed online to gain an understanding of drivers’ text driving experiences as well as their demographic information. The results from 232 people revealed that the majority of drivers are aware of the associated risks with texting while driving. However, more than one-fourth of them still frequently send or read text messages while driving. In addition to the questionnaire, through the use of a virtual-reality driving simulator, this study examined drivers’ driving performance while they were engaged in some forms of text driving under different challenging traffic conditions. Through a blocked factorial experiment, drivers would either read a text message or respond to it with two levels of text complexity while using either hand-held or hands-free texting method. Their driving performance was assessed based on the number of driving violations observed in each scenario. Conclusions regarding the impacts of different forms of texting, text complexity, and response mode on drivers driving performance were drawn.

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The authors would like to acknowledge The Rhode Island Department of Transportation; the University of Rhode Island Transportation Center; and the Mechanical, Industrial, and System Engineering Department of the University of Rhode Island for their support and guidance throughout this research project.


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