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Hum Factors. 1995 Jun;37(2):430-6.

Relative effects of age and compromised vision on driving performance.

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West Side Veterans Administration Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA.


The aim of this study was to determine the relative effects of age and compromised vision on driving-related skills and on-road accidents. A total of 107 subjects were tested. They represented four groups that varied in age and visual status, as follows: (1) a younger, normally sighted group; (2) an older, normally sighted group; (3) a younger, visually compromised group; and (4) an older, visually compromised group. Driving performance was assessed by self-reported and state-recorded accident frequency and by an evaluation of performance on an interactive driving simulator. The older groups had poorer driving-related skills, as measured with our interactive driving simulator, than had the younger groups, but they did not have significantly higher on-road accident rates than the younger groups. The older subjects and those with compromised vision had reduced risk-taking scores, as measured with a self-report questionnaire. In addition, all older drivers had increased eye movements and had slower simulator driving speeds, which suggests that behavioral compensation is made for visuocognitive/motor deficits. Regression analyses showed that compromised vision and visual field loss predicted real-world accidents in our study population.

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