Drowsiness and Road Traffic
Microsleeps are one of the most common reasons for accidents in road traffic. According to the “Deutsche Verkehrswacht” (A German Road Safety Organization), up to one quarter of all accidents in Germany is caused by falling asleep momentarily while driving. This especially applies to truck drivers; however, every other driver who suffers from lack of sleep or insomnia, or who drives during the most dangerous periods of night ( 1:00 am to 3:00 am ) is also at risk.
Detection of drowsiness
Yawning can be a first sign of fatigue. Apart from that, there is an abundance of physiological and behavioral indicators that can indicate drowsiness. The problem is that none of those indicators in itself is enough to detect drowsiness reliably. The observation-based assessment of driver drowsiness is a reliable method to determine the current level of drowsiness. A large number of behavioral indicators are systematically observed and then integrated into a global value of drowsiness.
For an efficient and highly reliable assessment of driver drowsiness we use the HFC-Drowsiness Scale®: It has been improved and quality-tested in numerous projects, and can be applied for both real-time assessment (e.g. by co-drivers) and for video-based observation.
Our Offer – Fatigue Experiments from Market Leaders
HFC is Germany’s market leader in the assessment of drowsiness. We conduct drowsiness studies in the field or in simulators, for which we use the HFC-Drowsiness Scale® for the assessment of driver state. Our services are characterized by a high degree of experience with night-time driving tests, ensuring driver safety with trained investigators, use of HFC-drowsiness scale with highly trained and experienced raters, high reliability of drowsiness assessment, thorough quality control, adherence to delivery dates.
We offer support in all stages of the development process:
- Driving studies in simulators and real traffic
- Studies in real traffic are accompanied by driving teacher
- Data collection: behavioral and physiological measures, driver video
- Self-assessment and observer-based assessment during driving by HFC-Drowsiness Scale®
Analysis and Evaluation
- Drowsiness assessment from two independent experts
- Collection and evaluation of further criteria
- Self-assessment, indirect and physiological measures (e.g. steering angle, EOG, saccade inclinations)
- Validation of assistance systems
- Testing of reliability and accuracy
- Determination of the optimal warning thresholds in regard to compliance rates and acceptance