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Accid Anal Prev. 2013 Sep;58:187-94. doi: 10.1016/j.aap.2012.12.025. Epub 2013 Jan 14.

Is naturalistic driving research possible with highly instrumented cars? Lessons learnt in three research centres.

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INTRAS, Universitat de València, Research Institute on Traffic and Road Safety, C/Serpis, 29, 46022 Valencia, Spain.


This paper provides an overview of the experiences using Highly Instrumented Cars (HICs) in three research Centres across Europe; Spain, the UK and Greece. The data collection capability of each car is described and an overview presented relating to the relationship between the level of instrumentation and the research possible. A discussion then follows which considers the advantages and disadvantages of using HICs for ND research. This includes the obtrusive nature of the data collection equipment, the cost of equipping the vehicles with sophisticated Data Acquisition Systems (DAS) and the challenges for data storage and analysis particularly with respect to video data. It is concluded that the use of HICs substantially increases the depth of knowledge relating to the driver's behaviour and their interaction with the vehicle and surroundings. With careful study design and integration into larger studies with Low(ly) instrumented Cars (LICs), HICs can contribute significantly and in a relatively naturalistic manner to the driver behaviour research.


Data acquisition systems; Instrumented cars; Naturalistic driving; Road safety; Unobtrusive observation

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