The experience of road environments under two lighting and traffic conditions: application of a Road Environment Construct List

Steyvers, F., Dekker, K., Brookhuis, K. & Jackson, A., Oct-1994, In : Applied Cognitive Psychology. 8, 5, p. 497-511 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

The aim of this study is to find out whether the different accident rates on two roads may be explained by drivers' different appreciations of these roads. Therefore a rating scale specially developed for the evaluation of drivers' experience of the road environment was used. The study is based on the assumption that experience of the road environment is an important factor in driving behaviour. An experiment was carried out in which two roads were compared in daylight and darkness, with and without traffic. The roads were presented on films. Subjects' evaluation scores appeared to be founded on three factors, which explained 66.8 per cent of the variance. The factors were named 'hedonic value', 'activational value' and 'perceptual variation'. Composite scores were constructed from the rating scale scores for each factor, per road, and condition. This revealed that the two roads differed on all three factors. Ambient lighting and traffic conditions also influenced the values of the factors and some interactions were found. The range of scores for one road was greater than for the other. The road that ranked lowest on activational level and perceptual variation, especially during daylight conditions with no traffic, was ranked highest on hedonic value. This combination of conditions and experiences could explain the higher rate of 'incomprehensible' single vehicle accidents on that road compared with the other.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)497-511
Number of pages15
JournalApplied Cognitive Psychology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct-1994

ID: 6397659