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Social Science Studies the Most Hazardous Thing on the Road: You
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From page 1...
... Voevodsky was a pioneer in what is now known as the science of human factors and ergo nomics. The field had been growing rapidly since World War II, when there was a sudden pressing need to reduce errors and accidents caused by personnel using complicated military systems.
From page 2...
... Nonetheless, 30 years later rear-end collisions caused by driver inattention remain a severe national problem, exacerbated by the proliferation of in-car distractions from cell phones, dashboard display screens, on-board navigation systems, email and social media connections, and more. A recent large-scale study found that "potentially 36%, or 4 million, of the Many safety nearly 11 million crashes occurring in the United States annually could be avoided if no distraction was present." Compared to an attentive, undistracted systems and driver, the data shows that operating the car's radio roughly doubles the risk of procedures we a crash, while using touch-screen menus increase it by a factor of 4.6.
From page 3...
... One issue will be minimizing the effect called "automation surprise" in which an automated The National Advanced system performs an operation totally unexpected by the user, with potentially Driving Simulator at the disastrous results. University of Iowa gauges Indeed, human factors science will soon be facing one of the most daunt- driver responses to both automobile design features ing challenges in its history with the fast-approaching advent of self-driving and unexpected road cars, or autonomous vehicles (AVs)
From page 4...
... The RAND Corporation notes in a new report that "auton omous vehicles would have to be driven hundreds of millions of miles and sometimes hundreds of billions of miles to demonstrate their reliability," a process that could take tens or even hundreds of years to complete. "Therefore, at least for fatalities and injuries, test-driving alone can not provide sufficient evidence for demonstrating autonomous vehicle safety." Less than exhaustive reliability testing will place new demands on human factors scientists.

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