Seeking drivers without a commercial license (CDL) for a research study aimed at improving truck driving safety.
- Requires an annual 2-hour office visit.
- Visits include cognitive, visual and simulator tests to assess and improve driving safety.
- $50 compensation is provided.
Driving is a highly dynamic task that requires careful planning and consideration.
Such planning and consideration are highly dependent on cognitive and visual skills for accuracy.
This is an intervention that has not been investigated thoroughly and this project will improve the diagnosis and treatment of cognitive and visual fitness of commercial drivers. We will compare non-commercial driver performance to commercial driver performance to find differences and similarities which may point to key interventions.
Assessing and Improving the Cognitive and Visual Driving Fitness of Older Long-Haul Truck Drivers
During the first year of this proposal, our team developed a driving fitness assessment battery that consists of tests that have been shown in the literature to be reliable and valid measures of driving-related cognitive and visual skills in commercial drivers. We are now expanding this battery of tests to adult drivers of non-commercial vehicles. These tests consist of the Snellen Maze Test, Trails A and B, Dot Cancellation Test, Range of Motion, Gait Speed, and Visual Exams. Cognitively, the Montreal Cognitive Exam (MoCA) exam will be used. Drivers over age 18 licensed to drive will be recruited and given this battery of tests to:
- Assess their cognitive and visual fitness,
- Compare the results of commercial and non-commercial drivers to look for safety interventions, and
- Identify potential risk factors that contribute to unsafe driving.
We anticipate that this part of the study will be helpful in identifying drivers who have cognitive and/or visual impairments that may make driving a truck carrying hazardous materials unsafe. A unique aspect of this part of the study is the possibility of improving driving fitness by offering drivers with demonstrated cognitive and visual deficits the opportunity to retrain and improve such skills in a technologically advanced high-fidelity simulator. The Kansas Highway Patrol and Teamsters 41 will collaborate with us for recruitment of our subjects.
We anticipate that this study will be helpful in identifying differences in attention, vision, and memory between commercial and non-commercial drivers.
Moreover, this project will also meet Mid-America Transportation Center (MATC)'s research goal to make fundamental advancements in basic and theoretical research related to improving the safety of the US and Region VII transportation systems. A key focus is to ensure that this research product will be implemented by regional and national transportation agencies.
The research team information will be updated soon.