Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Overtaking Assistant Could Help Prevent Many Traffic-related Deaths

Date:
February 27, 2008
Source:
Delft University of Technology
Summary:
Overtaking on two-lane roads is easier if drivers use what is known as an overtaking assistant, a system which indicates when it is safe to overtake. This system prevents reckless drivers overtaking when it is not safe, and can also aid cautious drivers in overtaking slower vehicles. This is the proposition of young researcher.

Using a simulator, women overtook more when driving using the overtaking assistant, while men overtook less.
Credit: Image courtesy of Delft University of Technology

Overtaking on two-lane roads is easier if drivers use what is known as an overtaking assistant, a system which indicates when it is safe to overtake. This system prevents reckless drivers overtaking when it is not safe and can also aid cautious drivers in overtaking slower vehicles.

Each year in the Netherlands at least 25 deaths are caused by overtaking manoeuvres that go wrong. In many other countries, the statistics are much higher. Researcher Geertje Hegeman has designed a warning system (the overtaking assistant) which displays a green light when it is safe to overtake another vehicle. If it is not safe, a red light is displayed. She has tested this in a driving simulator on a two-lane road. Her conclusion is that the overtaking assistant increases the driver's sense of ease and can have a positive effect on safety and efficiency.

Men and women

Hegeman charted current overtaking behaviour by observing traffic on the N305 between Almere and Zeewolde in the Netherlands. The observed overtaking manoeuvres take an average of about eight seconds. Ten percent of the overtakers have fewer than three seconds between them and the oncoming vehicle. She used these observations to design the overtaking assistant, which has been tested in a driving simulator as well as using other methods.

One interesting aspect of the study conducted by Hegeman in the driving simulator is the differences in behaviour between men and women. Of the participating 12 men and 12 women, the women overtook more when driving using the assistant, while men in fact overtook less. This reduced the differences in driving behaviour between men and women. Furthermore, when using the assistant, men were less inclined to swerve to one side (they often do this to see whether there is any oncoming traffic), which is also beneficial to traffic safety.

Inter-vehicle communication

Hegeman's overtaking assistant is not yet commercially available. Hegeman: 'The required technology is still being developed. BMW's top-range cars do carry a kind of inverted overtaking assistant which indicates when it is not safe to overtake. This is done with the aid of GPS; the system knows reasonably precisely when bends or hills are coming up. Chiefly due to a fear of claims, however, BMW does not yet dare to actively display a green light for overtaking.'

In addition to GPS, inter-vehicle communication between all vehicles is in Hegeman's view needed in order to give correct overtaking advice. This is already the subject of a great deal of study (e.g. with a view to anti-collision systems), but according to Hegeman it could be another ten years before the first overtaking assistants are commercially available.

Eastern Europe

One advantage of the overtaking assistant compared to other solutions aimed at making overtaking easier and safer (overtaking bans or special lanes) is that the assistant can be used anywhere in the world. The benefits of the overtaking assistant could be particularly great in, for instance, East European countries which have many two-lane roads and relatively long, straight stretches of road.

This is the proposition of researcher Geertje Hegeman, who will receive her PhD on this subject from TU Delft in the Netherlands on Thursday 28 February.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Delft University of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Delft University of Technology. "Overtaking Assistant Could Help Prevent Many Traffic-related Deaths." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 February 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080226092749.htm>.
Delft University of Technology. (2008, February 27). Overtaking Assistant Could Help Prevent Many Traffic-related Deaths. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080226092749.htm
Delft University of Technology. "Overtaking Assistant Could Help Prevent Many Traffic-related Deaths." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080226092749.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-Free Travel

Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-Free Travel

AP (July 23, 2014) 'Ray' the robotic parking valet at Dusseldorf Airport in Germany lets travelers to avoid the hassle of finding a parking spot before heading to the check-in desk. (July 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Boeing Ups Outlook on 52% Profit Jump

Boeing Ups Outlook on 52% Profit Jump

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 23, 2014) Commercial aircraft deliveries rose seven percent at Boeing, prompting the aerospace company to boost full-year profit guidance- though quarterly revenues missed analyst estimates. Bobbi Rebell reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Europe's Car Market on the Rebound?

Europe's Car Market on the Rebound?

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 23, 2014) Daimler kicks off a round of second-quarter earnings results from Europe's top carmakers with a healthy set of numbers - prompting hopes that stronger sales in Europe will counter weakness in emerging markets. Hayley Platt reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
9/11 Commission Members Warn of Terror "fatigue" Among American Public

9/11 Commission Members Warn of Terror "fatigue" Among American Public

Reuters - US Online Video (July 22, 2014) Ten years after releasing its initial report, members of the 9/11 Commission warn of the "waning sense of urgency" in combating terrorists attacks. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins